New GUIDE by UNIDO and shecco assists Developing Countries in adopting Natural Refrigerants

By Simon Burkel, Nov 20, 2013, 11:45 4 minute reading

The United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) and market development company shecco have published a joint report providing assistance to developing countries in the transition away from ozone-depleting substances to natural refrigerants and foam-blowing agents. The “GUIDE UNIDO – Natural Solutions for Developing Countries” presents results from the ATMOsphere Technology Summit, findings from two global surveys, and 50+ case studies from developing countries.&n

The “GUIDE UNIDO” was launched to support economies in transition and developing countries looking for safe, cost-effective and technically viable natural solutions to replace ozone-depleting substances in the heating, refrigeration, air-conditioning and foam-blowing sectors. Its ultimate objective is to share relevant experiences with ammonia, carbon dioxide, hydrocarbons, water and air in the current phase-out of ozone-depleting hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs) in Article 5 countries under the Montreal Protocol. Jointly researched and published by UNIDO and shecco, the GUIDE is based on two pillars:

  1. UNIDO ATMOsphere Technology Summit: Experiences shared and lessons learnt from the conference held on 3-4 June 2013 at the UNIDO headquarters in Vienna. The event focused on technology solutions for the refrigeration and air-conditioning sectors, as well as for the foam sector. It brought together 150 National Ozone Officers, ministry representatives, component and system suppliers, end-users, academics and non-governmental associations to actively discuss the technical, commercial and social viability of natural refrigerants and foams.
  2. Global Survey: An online survey jointly launched by UNIDO and shecco addressed stakeholder groups involved in the HCFC phase-out in developing countries and economies in transition. It received responses from 82 countries. This survey was important in capturing and computing the opinions and trends amongst different stakeholders across the entire globe. 

Natural Substances paramount in transation away from HCFCs

As one of the implementing agencies of the Montreal Protocol, UNIDO has always been committed to promoting sustainable solutions for companies in the refrigeration, air conditioning and foam sectors that are transitioning away from ozone depleting substances. Natural refrigerants and foam blowing agents with low global warming potential are of paramount importance in this transition,” explains Sidi Menad Si Ahmed, Director of the Montreal Protocol Branch of UNIDO, the motivation for launching the GUIDE UNIDO.
The GUIDE is a concrete tool to draw attention to the existing barriers but most importantly the success stories and innovative solutions developed in and for developing countries for advancing the use of natural refrigerants and foam-blowing agents. We hope that the survey results and case studies can serve as a reference for industry, legislators and end-users in need of verifiable information about best-practice initiatives to lead the transition away from ozone-depleting and high-global warming substances,” says Nina Masson, lead author and Head of Market Research shecco. 

The GUIDE also covers the following topics:
  • Natural Refrigerants & Foam-Blowing Agents: An introduction to the most commonly used natural refrigerants and foam-blowing agents including ammonia, carbon dioxide, hydrocarbons, water and air in the HVAC&R sector today.
  • Success Stories of Natural Substance Use: An overview of best-practice examples of natural refrigerants and foam-blowing agents to be followed in industrial refrigeration, light commercial and commercial refrigeration, domestic refrigeration, and the heating and foam sectors in developing countries.
  • Barriers for the uptake of natural substances in developing countries: An analysis of the main technology, market and policy barriers for the adoption of natural substances in developing countries. For each section a general introduction is followed by specific barriers identified and concrete solutions found: 
  1. Awareness
  2. Training & certification
  3. Safety & technology standards
  4. Regulation & policy frameworks
  5. Financial incentives & costs
  6. Technology & market availability
  7. Refrigerant selection methodology
  • Case Studies: 50 case studies are presented in an easy-to-access format providing a short overview of best-practice examples in developing countries. The section is sorted by the main type of barrier addressed by the example. Within each barrier category, cases are listed by alphabetical order for the countries involved.
Official GUIDE launch at the ATMOsphere Bangkok Side Event 

The GUIDE UNIDO was officially launched during a dedicated side event jointly organised by UNIDO and shecco on 24 October 2013 in Bangkok, Thailand. The “ATMOsphere MOP25” event was a success, bringing together 100 participants, mostly National Ozone Units officers, environmental protection agencies, industry representatives and end-users. It was held during the 25th Meeting of the Parties to the Montreal Protocol (MOP25). 
More information

The United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) is the specialized agency of the United Nations that promotes industrial development for poverty reduction, inclusive globalization and environmental sustainability. The Organization draws on four mutually reinforcing categories of services: technical cooperation, analytical and policy advisory services, standard setting and compliance, and a convening function for knowledge transfer and networking. Its Montreal Protocol Branch is involved as an implementing agency for the Multilateral Fund for the Implementation of the Montreal Protocol.

About shecco

For more than a decade market development expert shecco has been active in helping bring climate friendly technologies faster to market. shecco supports over 100+ partners worldwide in two areas: the HVAC&R sector, where the focus is on sustainable refrigeration, heating & cooling technologies using natural refrigerants; and the transport sectors where an emphasis is put on electric vehicles. shecco offers a variety of services, ranging from online industry platforms, to market research & consultancy services, events management, funding & grants support, and public affairs. 


By Simon Burkel

Nov 20, 2013, 11:45

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