The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) reports R-22 refrigerant depletes the ozone layer. Therefore, R-22 (Freon) is being phased out. The EPA has reduced the production of R-22 refrigerant for 2013. By 2015, production will be almost completely banned.
The price of R-22 refrigerant has increased drastically, and will continue to rise. The availability of R-22 refrigerant will decrease until eventually contractors will not have it in inventory.
If you have an existing R-22 heat pump or air conditioning system, take care of it by having it serviced regularly.