EIA: 'Put natural refrigerants on level playing field'

Put natural refrigerants on level playing field

More must be done to lift barriers to natural refrigerant uptake such as restrictive safety standards, the EIA’s Clare Perry told visitors to the EuroShop tradeshow yesterday.

Outdated safety standards that impose restrictive charge limits on hydrocarbons and a lack of trained contractors in some parts of the world still represent barriers to wider uptake of natural refrigerant technologies, Clare Perry, climate campaign leader at the Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA), told an ATMOsphere Network event at EuroShop 2017 in Düsseldorf, Germany yesterday.

“After CFCs, HCFCs and HFCs, many countries around the world want to finally get off the chemical treadmill. Natural refrigerants offer sustainable, energy-efficient and future-proof cooling solutions, but the playing field still isn’t level,” Perry said.

Calling on major end users and manufacturers of natural refrigerant-based solutions to play a greater role in the debate on international standards, the NGO representative warned that this is currently “completely dominated by the chemicals industry“.

Hosted at Italian multinational CAREL’s booth, the ATMOsphere Network event brought together retailers and HVAC&R industry professionals attending EuroShop, the world’s biggest retail show, taking place from 5-9 March 2017.

“Our message here at the show is ‘Natural Efficiency – available now’,” said Francesco Nalini, Group Managing Director, CAREL, outlining the group’s strategy for natural refrigerants in food retail applications.

“Our goal is to make commercial refrigeration dramatically more sustainable. This industry has a big environmental footprint,” Nalini said.

He described the company’s role as “to support all stakeholders in making the transition” towards a more sustainable commercial refrigeration sector – not just by promoting natural refrigerant-based solutions but also by improving overall system efficiency.

shecco CEO Marc Chasserot argued that China would soon become a major player in terms of natural refrigerants. “That’s a market to watch,” he said.