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The Minister for the Environment, Greg Hunt, has published the annual list of classes of products the Minister is proposing to consider, during the next financial year, for some form of accreditation or regulation under the Product Stewardship Act 2011.

The federal government has confirmed there are no plans to introduce any form of accreditation or regulation relating to air conditioners and refrigerators during the 2015/16 financial year.

Each year the government must consider which products should be listed for product stewardship under the Product Stewardship Act 2011.

Environment Minister, Greg Hunt, has formally published the list which covered 'end-of-life air conditioners and refrigerators with small gas charges' in the 2013/14 and 2014/15 product lists.

"The Department assessed the feasibility of introducing a product stewardship approach to improve management of end-of-life domestic refrigeration and air conditioning equipment," the department said in a statement published on its web site.

"A cost benefit analysis did not show a net benefit to society and the Department will not pursue further work on end-of-life domestic refrigeration and air conditioning equipment at this time.

"The work undertaken has contributed to knowledge on the management of end-of-life whitegoods in Australia that will assist industry and governments to better manage disposal of these  products in the future. Opportunities for better management which may be examined at a jurisdictional level include improvements in disposal pathways for refrigerators and freezers and reducing shredder floc going to landfill.

"The Department will also use this work to help inform the review of the Ozone Protection and Synthetic Greenhouse Gas Management Act 1989 and associated legislation.

"The Ozone Review aims to identify opportunities to reduce compliance costs for businesses and individuals and to reduce emissions of ozone depleting substances and synthetic greenhouse gases in line with international efforts."

A spokesperson for the department told CCN that the government will work with industry to develop best practice guidelines for retailer take-back schemes.

This guide will help industry ensure that retail take-back schemes operate at best practice and encourage greater availability of take-back services for consumers when purchasing a new appliance.

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