The Australian Refrigeration Council Ltd (ARC – also know as Arctick) was appointed in June 2005 by the Australian Government as the industry board to administer the Air Conditioning and Refrigeration regulations under the Ozone Protection and Synthetic Greeenhouse Gas Management Act (1989). ARC is responsible for granting Refrigerant Handling Licences and Refrigerant Trading Authorisations approved under the Refrigeration and Air Conditioning regulations.
Why use an authorised Arctick business or licensed technician? In short, to protect our environment and to make sure you get the most out of your air conditioning and refrigeration equipment. Manufacturers warrenties are void if you do not use a licensed installer. Fluorocarbon refrigerants, used in nearly all refrigeration and air conditioning equipment in Australia, damage our environment. If they are released into our atmosphere, they contribute significantly to global warming and many also deplete the ozone layer. As an example of how much harm these substances can cause, 1kg of R410a (the refrigerant typically used in split-system air conditioners) has the same global warming impact as two tonnes of carbon dioxide — that’s like driving a four-cylinder car for six months. The harm is only done if the refrigerants are released into the atmosphere. Licensed technicians and authorised businesses have the training, skills and legal obligation to make sure that the emissions of these refrigerants are minimised.
By law, all installations of spit-system air conditioners must be carried out by a licensed technician. They are qualified to complete all of the tasks required to successfully install a split-system air conditioner, including connection of the pipes that carry refrigerant through the unit. The refrigerant in the unit, if it escapes into the atmosphere, will contribute to global warming. A licensed technician has the appropriate training and skills to minimise the risk of this happening.
Arctick licensees are also required to work to legally mandated standards. This means that they have to do the job properly.
A Refrigerant Trading Authorisation is required when a business or individual acquires, possesses or disposes of refrigerant, while a Refrigerant Handling Licence is needed by any person that handles refrigerant. A Refrigerant Trading Authorisation is subject to conditions and auditing processes designed to minimise the risk of emissions while the refrigerant is in their possession.
The holder of a Refrigerant Handling Licence is an individual who is qualified in their field of activity and has met the licensing requirements under the Ozone Protection and Synthetic Greenhouse Gas Management Regulations 1995. The fact that a licence holder must adhere to an Industry Code of Practice and possesses the skills to do the job, minimises the risk of refrigerant emission.
Under the Ozone Protection and Synthetic Greenhouse Gas Management Regulations 1995, anyone wanting to install, service or repair a fridge, freezer or air conditioner (or any other piece of refrigeration and air conditioning equipment) must be a licensed technician; that is, they must hold a Refrigerant Handling Licence.