Durbane Debates when China Charts Change
Casale Monferrato, Italy, December 2012. The day Durban meeting on Climate Change ended, a Chinese delegation from the Ministry of the Environment (MEP), Universities and the Industry Association planned the action to address climate change and ozone layer protection. The meeting took place in the in the Italian capital for Refrigeration and Air Conditioning- Casale Monferrato.
The Chinese mission, held at the Headquarters of Centro Studi Galileo was part of a project organised by GIZ, Proklima aimed at promoting new energy saving technology in refrigeration, air conditioning and heat pumps, as part of the phase out of HCFCs (Hydrochlorofluorocarbons). The meeting forged the links with leading experts in the field of refrigeration, connected with Centro Studi Galileo (CSG), TERRE Policy Centre, the Italian Association of Refrigeration (ATF), the European Energy Centre (EEC) and the vice-presidency of the European Association of Refrigeration (AREA).
European collaboration with China in the field of energy efficiency and particularly in refrigeration is creating new market synergies. Zhong Zhifeng of MEP stated,
“ Building strong bridge with Europe is important for us to ensure low GWP and Energy efficient technology. Hydrocarbons are one of the important alternatives that China is implementing for the phase out of HCFCs. This meeting is important beginning for the training and capacity building in this direction”. Joining MEP were the experts from Shanghai Jiao-Tong University and China Household Electrical Appliances Association (CHEAA).
Rajendra Shende, former Head of the United Nations Environment Programme and Chairman of Terre Policy Centre of India, who guided the meeting, stated that “ Efforts of GIZ and CSG in the field of improving the energy efficiency of refrigeration and Air conditioning appliances and the use of natural refrigerants are the most timely and relevant for China who is embarking on thee implementation of HCFC phase out.” Mr Shende has been working for more than 20 years on the environmental issues deriving from refrigeration gasses dangerous for the Earth’s ozone layer.
AREA’ Vice President Marco Buoni presented the European experience on the elimination of HCFC gasses, and the development of natural and alternative refrigerants, also presenting the results obtained in energy saving, in addition to highlighting the importance of qualification and certification of technicians.
The programme included the visit to the manufacturing plants including one that would provide the vending machines for Coca Cola, which would be deployed in the London Olympics in 2012. The machines would use the carbon dioxide as refrigerants, with better energy efficiency.
The key outcomes of the meeting were:
- Certification of Refrigeration Technicians as is done in Europe and implemented in countries like Italy has been found to be useful in reducing emissions and improving energy efficiency. China would strengthen its training programmes based on such experience.
- Harmonisation of policies on use and safe handling of low GWP gasses in refrigeration will lead to much needed global efforts for capacity building, to deploy natural gasses that are flammable (hydrocarbons), toxic (ammonia) or require high pressures (CO2).
- CSG,TERRE and China agreed to meet again in a few months’ time in order to create, in due course, an agreement of collaboration on certification, training, education and sharing experiences.
The Mayor at the City’s Municipality also welcomed the delegation
Notes to the editors:
1. Centro Studi Galileo-Italy, European Energy Centre-UK and TERRE Policy Centre-India, are leading partners in the fields of renewable energy, energy efficiency refrigeration and Air conditioning training and technologies.
2 Casale Monferrato is a refrigeration district of Italy and is hub of distinct competencies, for example in the production of bottle coolers using natural refrigerants. This city has technologies, which are much in demand by companies like Red Bull, Coca Cola and Unilever. The products manufactured here, such as the ones used for the Olympic Games Beijing 2008, use cutting edge green technologies and will also be used in London 2012.
Casale Monferrato also is a capacity building centre with strong demonstrated expertise in educating personnel and professionals in green technologies that contribute to Green Economies.
3. China is the largest manufacturer of HCFCs and the Air conditioning Units in the world. It has recently embarked on the implementation of HCFC phase out with a roadmap which takes into account the importance of energy efficiency, quality improvements of products, and the creation of smart green technologies, with special focus on adoption of new refrigerants with low environmental impacts. MEP is the focal point for the implementation of HCFC phase out. The visit of China delegation aimed at getting to know the developments in Europe and develop the collaboration for the implementation.
The roadmap aims at increasing energy efficiency by 20% by the year 2015, and by a further 15% by 2020. Additionally, refrigeration fluids, which are being considered, include hydrocarbons for home appliances, and further natural refrigerants for other applications. For example, a solution designed by a Chinese company, which uses CO2 as refrigerant to cool beverages and freeze food, reduces the system energy consumption by 30% every year, and the overall weight of the plant is reduced by 8% (source: China Household Electrical Appliances Association – CHEAA)
Centro Studi Galileo, Terre Policy Centre