Types of import permit and how to apply

Make sure you apply for the right type of permit to import your new or recycled HFCs. We explain how and when to apply here.

If you want to import a bulk hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) into New Zealand after 31 December 2019, you will need a permit. 'Bulk HFC' means a container of new or recycled HFC gas in an unprocessed form, alone or in a mixture. You need permits for both new and recycled bulk HFCs.

The definition of bulk HFC excludes HFC that is in a manufactured product other than a container used for the transport or storage of the HFC. You do not need a permit to import HFCs within manufactured products, such as HFCs in a car air-conditioning system or in fire extinguishers.

Types of permit and when to apply Plus

The type of import permit, and when you need to apply, depends on the origin of the HFC (new or recycled).

Table showing the type of permit, and application deadline, for different types of HFC imports

Type of import Type of applicant Permit needed When to apply
To import new bulk HFCs Applicants with grandparented eligibility Apply for a grandparented import permit By 1 Sept in the calendar year before the year of import
To import new bulk HFCs All applicants Apply for a special import permit By 1 July in the calendar year before the year of import
To import recycled bulk HFCs All applicants Apply for a recycled HFC import permit Any time
To import an equivalent amount after exporting new bulk HFCs All applicants Apply for an exporters' import permit Any time after the export takes place, but note that the proposed import must take place in the same calendar year as the export

 

Grandparented import permit Plus

Up to eighty percent of New Zealand’s imports of new bulk HFCs each calendar year will be available for holders of grandparented eligibility: meaning importers eligible to apply for grandparented import permits. These import permits are issued annually and are valid for one calendar year only.

You can only apply for this sort of permit if you hold grandparented eligibility. 

Read more about grandparented eligibility and transferring grandparented eligibility

How to apply for a grandparented import permit

1. Download and complete the application form. Note that you must calculate, and state in your application, the carbon dioxide equivalent in tonnes of the new bulk HFCs that you intend to import into New Zealand during the following calendar year. The amount applied for cannot be more than the amount you are eligible for (carbon dioxide equivalent). If you wish to apply for more, you must apply for a special permit (see below).

OLPA HFC Annual Import Application Form (docx 101KB)

How to calculate the carbon dioxide equivalent for your HFC consignment

Use our online tool to calculate the carbon dioxide equivalent for your HFC consignment (xlsx 30KB)

Note: This tool is for calculation purposes only to assist the preparation of your application. It is not indicative of the final amount of HFCs that you may be eligible to import.

2. The deadline for applications each year is 1 September (three months before the start of the calendar year of your intended import). You are able to apply earlier, but we cannot accept late applications. (Under the law, we are unable to consider any applications arriving after 1 September.)

3. Send your application form and all supporting information, preferably by email, to ozone@epa.govt.nz. Please include "Application for HFC grandparented import permit" in the subject line, and name all attachments so that we can easily identify them. Alternatively, mail your application to: HS Applications team, Environmental Protection Authority, Private Bag 63002, Wellington 6140, New Zealand

Please contact us if you have any questions:

By email: ozone@epa.govt.nz

Freephone (within New Zealand): 0800 429 7827 (0800 HAZSUBS)

4. We will contact you if we need any more information. We will not be able to process your application unless all required information is supplied.

5. Once we have processed your application, we will send you your grandparented import permit by email. The permit may include any conditions of use. Please note that we may publish information relating to permits on our website.

Special import permit Plus

Twenty percent or more of New Zealand’s total net import quantity of new HFCs each year will be available for special import permits. These permits are generally valid for one calendar year, but may be extended to three years.

We have considered applications for special permits for the calendar year 2020.

HFC special permit decision for 2020 September 2019 (pdf 652KB)

We received one submission on the proposed special permit decision for 2020:

Read our decision on the submission (pdf 217KB)

Anyone can apply for a special import permit, but you will need to provide a reasonable justification for your application, which is required by law (we tell you more about this below). You may apply for a special import permit even if you have grandparented eligibility, in addition to your allocation under that eligibility. 

Read more about grandparented eligibility

How to apply for a special import permit

1. Download and complete the application form. Note that you must calculate, and state in your application, the carbon dioxide equivalent in tonnes of the new bulk HFCs that you intend to import into New Zealand during the following calendar year. You must also: 

  • tell us if you hold or have applied for a grandparented eligibility for the same calendar year, and if so, how much of your eligibility is used or accounted for
  • show that you are committed to using cost-effective alternatives to HFCs in the longer-term
  • if applicable, show us that you tried to obtain grandparented eligibility to import new bulk HFCs by a transfer of eligibility
  • tell us about any energy efficiency or other environmental advantages occurring as a result of receiving a special import permit, and
  • include proof of any negative economic or social impacts if you don't receive a special import permit.

OLPA HFC Annual Import Application Form (docx 101KB)

How to calculate the carbon dioxide equivalent for your HFC consignment

Use our online tool to calculate the carbon dioxide equivalent for your HFC consignment (xlsx 30KB)

Note: This tool is for calculation purposes only to assist the preparation of your application. It is not indicative of the final amount of HFCs that you may be eligible to import.

The deadline for applications each year is 1 July (six months before the start of the calendar year of your intended import). We cannot accept late applications. (Under the law, we are unable to consider any applications arriving after 1 July.)

2. Send your application form, and all supporting information, preferably by email to ozone@epa.govt.nz. Please include "Application for HFC special import permit" in the subject line, and name all attachments so that we can easily identify them. Alternatively, mail your application to: HS Applications team, Environmental Protection Authority, Private Bag 63002, Wellington 6140, New Zealand.

Please contact us if you have any questions by email at:ozone@epa.govt.nz or freephone (within New Zealand) on 0800 429 7827 (0800 HAZSUBS).

We will contact you if we need any more information, and when we need it by. We will not be able to process your application unless all required information is supplied.

We will consider all of the completed applications for special imports together. While allocating permits, we must ensure that the combined HFC allocated in all permits does not exceed New Zealand’s limit for that year. The permit will state the period for which it is valid, the amount of HFCs that can be imported (the carbon dioxide equivalent), and any other conditions of use. Please note that we may publish details of all applications for special import permits and permit holders on our website.

Recycled HFC permit Plus

If you plan to import bulk recycled HFCs, you must apply for a permit from us. We consider applications for this sort of permit at any time of year. Anyone can apply and permits may be issued for up to three years.

How to apply for a recycled HFC import permit

1. Allow plenty of time before your planned shipment as processing recycled HFC import permits can take up to 40 working days to process, after we receive all the information we require.

2. Please contact us to discuss your plans:

By email: ozone@epa.govt.nz

Freephone (within New Zealand): 0800 429 7827 (0800 HAZSUBS)

3. Download and complete the application form. Note that you must calculate, and state in your application, the carbon dioxide equivalent in tonnes of the bulk recycled HFCs that you intend to import, and provide evidence that they are recycled gases.

OLPA HFC Recycled Import Application Form (docx 82 KB)

How to calculate the carbon dioxide equivalent for your HFC consignment

Use our online tool to calculate the carbon dioxide equivalent for your HFC consignment (xlsx 30KB)

Note: This tool is for calculation purposes only to assist the preparation of your application. It is not indicative of the final amount of HFCs that you may be eligible to import.

4. Send your application form, and all supporting information, preferably by email to ozone@epa.govt.nz. Please include "Application for recycled HFC import permit" in the subject line, and name all attachments so that we can identify them easily. Alternatively, mail your application to: HS Applications team, Environmental Protection Authority, Private Bag 63002, Wellington 6140, New Zealand   

5. We will contact you if we need any more information. If you do not supply the information we need, we cannot process your application.

6. We will let you know the outcome of your application by email. Any import permits that we issue will include conditions of use. Please note that we may publish details of permits on our website.

Exporter's import permit Plus

If you export a quantity of new bulk HFCs, you can apply for a permit to import the equivalent amount of new bulk HFCs (carbon dioxide equivalent) back into New Zealand within the same calendar year. This is an exporters' import permit. Note: this does not include bulk HFCs that were transhipped (meaning in transit, so that the bulk HFCs are imported and exported again within 20 working days).

How HFC exporter's importer's permits work (pdf 205KB)

To apply for an exporters' import permit

1. Plan carefully: you cannot apply for this permit until your export is undertaken, and the planned import must take place within the same calendar year.

2. Contact us to discuss your plans:

By email: ozone@epa.govt.nz

Freephone (within New Zealand): 0800 429 7827 (0800 HAZSUBS)

3. Download and complete the application form. Note that you must calculate, and state in your application, the carbon dioxide equivalent in tonnes of new bulk HFCs that you exported (excluding transhipped gases) and provide evidence that they have left the country.

OLPA HFC Annual Import Application Form (101KB)

How to calculate the carbon dioxide equivalent for your HFC consignment

Use our online tool to calculate the carbon dioxide equivalent for your HFC consignment (xlsx 30KB)

Note: This tool is for calculation purposes only to assist the preparation of your application. It is not indicative of the final amount of HFCs that you may be eligible to import.

4. Send your application form, and all supporting information, by email to ozone@govt.nz. Please include "Application for exporters' import permit" in the subject line, and name all attachments so that we can identify them easily. Alternatively, mail your application to: HS Applications team, Environmental Protection Authority, Private Bag 63002, Wellington 6140, New Zealand   

5. We will contact you if we need more information. If you do not supply the information we need, we cannot process your application.

6. We will let you know the outcome of your application by email. Any permits that we issue will include conditions of use, including the period for which they are valid and the amount of new bulk HFC gases that the permit allows you to import. Please note that we may publish details of permits on our website.

 

HFCs in transit through New Zealand (transhipment) Plus

If you wish to tranship a consignment of bulk HFCs (new or recycled) through New Zealand, with the sole purpose of exporting the HFCs within 20 working days (i.e. goods in transit), you can apply for an exemption at any time. There is no limit on the amount of HFCs that you can tranship through New Zealand under these conditions. 

To apply for an exemption, download the application form from our webpage on ozone-depleting substances