Apply for a refrigerant handler permit

Only registered refrigerant handlers are permitted to carry out installations, repairs and servicing of air conditioning and refrigeration equipment.

Download the current list of Registered Refrigerant Handlers.

The permitting process is authorized by the Environmental Authority and is administered by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources.

First time applicant requirements

  1. Complete the Refrigeration and Air Conditioning course at Bermuda College
    1. This course is available on demand and can take 6–18 hours, depending on previous experience and qualifications.
    2. Contact Mr Ornette Fough at (441) 236- 9000 (OFough@college.bm) to make arrangement to take the course and test.
  2. Pass the US EPA Section 608 test
    1. Your instructor at the College will either give you a pass slip or will sign and date the top of a refrigerant handlers permit application and will notify the Department of Environment & Natural Resources.
  3. Read and sign the Refrigerant Handling Permit Application.
  4. Take your pass slip or completed permit application signed at the top by your instructor to the Licencing Office at the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, located at the Botanical Gardens, 169 South Road, Paget.  The fee for a new permit is $220 (2021)
  5. You will be issued your Refrigerant Handler Permit and informed of when it will need to be renewed.
  6. Your name will be added to the certified refrigerant handler database and posted online.

Permits must be renewed every five years.

Renewal process requirements

  1. If you have been working in the refrigeration and air conditioning business continuously for the past 5 years you must attend a 5-Year Update Meeting at the Bermuda College
    This meeting provides any updates in legislation and international best practices.  Bermuda College will notify the Department of Environment & Natural Resources of who has attended the 5-year update meeting.
  2. If you have not been working in the refrigeration and air conditioning business continuously for the past 5 years you must take the US EPA Section 608 test again
  3. Read and sign the Refrigerant Handling Permit Application
  4. Complete and sign a new application form and bring with your expired Refrigerant Handling Permit to the Licencing Office at the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, located at the Botanical Gardens, 169 South Road, Paget. The fee for a new permit is $220 (2021)
  5. You will be issued with your renewed Refrigerant Handler Permit.
  6. Your details will be updated on the certified refrigerant handler database and posted online.

Background information

Bermuda has international obligations to manage ozone-depleting substances and other refrigerant gases. Refrigerant gases are known to have a direct negative impact on the thickness of the ozone layer that protects organisms on the earth's surface from the damaging short wave radiation from the sun. Newer replacement refrigerant gases are also known to have a very strong global warming potential.

Note that Bermuda is a signatory to the Montreal Protocol 1987 and aligns to the subsequent Amendments to that protocol that have been signed up to by the UK through an Environmental Authority Operational Policy (#14).

These ozone-depleting gases are listed as 'Controlled Chemicals' in the Clean Air Regulations 1993 and as such require 'Permission' in order to import, export or to handle due to the risk of being released into the atmosphere.  Only ‘Permitted Refrigerant Handlers’ can import refrigerants that are listed as controlled chemicals. Before any approval of an import permit is provided by the Environmental Authority the importer shall demonstrate the amount of refrigerants imported on previous import permits that were used, sold or disposed and to whom. 

The import permit process is described at: https://www.gov.bm/online-services/import-use-or-export-controlled-chemicals

Before any HVAC system is disposed by the Permitted Refrigerant Handler it shall have the refrigerant gases removed and recovered to the standards agreed in the refrigerant handler permit conditions.  The HVAC equipment for disposal shall then have an orange Government sticker applied with the permit holder’s number assigned.  Orange stickers are available from the Department of Environment and Natural Resources.

The Department of Environment and Natural Resources, together with the Bermuda College, have established a permitting process for installers, maintainers or servicing personnel of residential or commercial HVAC equipment to handle refrigerants in Bermuda in order to ensure that the gases are managed correctly.

Report any illegal or suspicious activities related to the handling of refrigerants.

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