Licences and reporting requirements
Import, export and manufacture of ODSs and SGGs
About licences and reporting
The Ozone Protection and Synthetic Greenhouse Gas Management Act 1989 (the Act) controls the manufacture, import and export of a range of ozone depleting substances (ODSs) and synthetic greenhouse gases (SGGs) in Australia.
The specific ODSs controlled are: chlorofluorocarbon (CFC); halon 1211, 1301 and 2402; CCl4(Carbon tetrachloride); CH3CCl3 (Methyl chloroform); hydrobromofluorocarbon (HBFC); hydrochlorofluorocarbon (HCFC); Methyl bromide; and bromochlormethane (BCM). The SGGs that are controlled are hydrofluorocarbon (HFC), perfluorocarbon (PFC) and sulphur hexafluoride (SF6).
The import, export and manufacture of these 'controlled substances', and the import and manufacture of certain products containing or designed to contain some of these substances, is prohibited in Australia unless the correct licence or exemption is held. The Act also prohibits the import and manufacture of products that contain or rely upon chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), including foams blown with CFCs.
All licences to import or export ozone depleting substances carry a condition that the licensee must only import or export the substance from a country that has ratified the Montreal Protocol and relevant subsequent Amendments.
- See the Register of Montreal Protocol Countries for more information.
It is a condition of all licences that the licensee does not allow another person or business to use their licence number.
There are four types of import/export licences under the Act.
- Ozone Depleting Substances/Synthetic Greenhouse Gas equipment licences: (EQPL) used to import equipment that contains ozone depleting substances or synthetic greenhouse gasses, including airconditioning and refrigeration equipment that contain a hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) or hydrochlorofluorocarbon (HCFC).
- Controlled substances licences: used to import (in bulk), export and manufacture hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), perfluorocarbons (PFCs) and/or sulfur hexafluoride (SF6), (known as synthetic greenhouse gases), hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs) and methyl bromide.
- Essential uses licences: Since 1996 the Act has prohibited the import, export and manufacture of CFCs, halons, CH3CCl3(Methyl chloroform), CCl4(Carbon tetrachloride), and BCMs without an essential uses licence. Such licences are only granted for a strictly limited range of essential uses approved by the parties to the Montreal Protocol.
- Used substance licences: Since 1996 the Act has prohibited the import and export of used or recycled HCFCs, Methyl bromide, BCMs, CFCs, halon, CCl4(Carbon tetrachloride) and CH3CCl3(Methyl chloroform) without a used substance licence.
There are specific circumstances under which an exemption from licensing requirements applies. Please check if your import activity is eligible for an exemption prior to applying for a licence as the licence application licensing fee is not refundable. There is no provision in the Act or the Regulations that gives the Minister or his/her delegate the power to refund the licence application fee. This includes situations where an applicant has lodged a licence application and then no longer requires a licence.
Records to be kept by licensees
If you hold a licence under the Act you have obligations to keep records under the Ozone Protection and Synthetic Greenhouse Management Regulations 1995.
- Records to be kept by licensees - fact sheet
Licensees are required to report to the department every 3 months, the type and amount of ODS & SGG manufactured, imported and exported, including in ODS/SGG equipment. Holders of ODS/SGG equipment licences are required to report the type and amount of ODS and SGG imported.
If no imports or exports were made during a reporting period, a 'nil' report is still required.
Reports may be lodged at any time before 11.59 pm on the 14th day following the end of each reporting period (including at any time during the relevant reporting period).
|Reporting Period||Reports Due|
|1 January – 31 March||14 April|
|1 April – 30 June||14 July|
|1 July – 30 September||14 October|
|1 October – 31 December||14 January|
NOTE: if the last day of the reporting period falls on a weekend or public holiday, the report is due by 11.59 pm on the next business/working day.
If you imported a scheduled substance for use as a feedstock you are required to provide quarterly reports to the department.
If you have any questions about reporting you may contact the Reporting Officer on 02 6274 1373.
For translating and interpretation assistance telephone 131 450
Contact for more information
For more information please contact the Import Operations Section on:
Phone: +61 2 6274 1373