If your fridge is running, you better go catch it. It could soon be banned completely from New York State.

No this isn't clickbait. The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) is looking for comments on this proposal to prohibit the sale of refrigerators. But chill out, it's not the fridge you have in your house.

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Part 494 Regulation

New York State's current Part 494 regulation prohibits the sale, installation, and use of certain substances that produce hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) emissions. You will typically see this come from retail refrigerators, chillers, and air conditioners. Many foam and aerosol propellants also produce these emissions.

What's dangerous about HFCs is that they are a greenhouse gas over one thousand times more powerful than carbon dioxide. The more they emit, the more they intensify global warming and climate change.

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HFCs actually make up around 6% of the greenhouse gas emissions in New York State. They are projected to increase 57% by the year 2050.

What's Going To Change?

Lawmakers are proposing new updates to the Part 494 regulation. The goal is to continue reducing HFC emissions by expanding the list of prohibited substances under the law.

They also want to create new requirements to address refrigerant leakage and disposal. All of these changes will aim to decrease greenhouse gas emissions, as recommended by the Significant New Alternatives Policy program (SNAP).

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Your Feedback

The DEC is now looking for your comment on their proposed updates to the regulation. On their website, you can review both their Request for Feedback form and their list of Frequently Asked Questions.

You can send your written feedback to climate.regs@dec.ny.gov, using the subject line "Part 494 Update". If you want to send it via mail, address your letter to Suzanne Hagell, NYSDEC Office of Climate Change, 625 Broadway, Albany NY, 12233-1030.

These 7 Prisons Are The Most Violent In New York State

New York released a report with the most recent number of violent assaults on inmates in state prisons. There were 134 inmate deaths noted in the report, although it doesn't break down the prisons where each death occurred or who caused them. Here's a look at some of the general violent incidents reported for 2020, which is the most recent data reported by the state. Compared to 10 years ago, inmate assaults have almost doubled. In 2011 there were 666 and in 2020 there were 1,205 reported. These numbers do not include inmate assaults on staff members. Overall, the number of unusual incidents includes things like assaults, deaths, accidents, sexual misconduct, and disruptive behavior.  According to the state,
"The number of unusual incidents has increased 132% from 5,980 in 2011 to 13,870 in 2020. These higher incident numbers were largely due to increases in assaults on incarcerated individuals (+81%), assaults on staff (+86%), contraband (+130%), disruptive behavior (+372%), and staff use of weapons (+1,035%)."
  In 2020, 1,836 weapons used to cut or stab, including ice picks, razor blades, can lids and shanks were discovered in state prisons around New York.

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