A typical commercial refrigeration or air conditioning system currently uses global warming intensive synthetic hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) gases as their primary refrigerants. Due to high leakage rate during servicing and operation of these systems, the direct impact on the environment is significant.
Whilst these gases replaced the older ozone-depleting CFC and HCFC products, the negative impact due to their high global warming potentials (GWPs) is increasingly being recognized by regulators and environmentally conscious users throughout the world.
In Australia, this direct global warming impact of such HFC systems varies between 20% and 70% of the total carbon footprint of such a refrigeration system. This will make the owners highly susceptible to the anticipated substantial cost increases for HFC refrigerants when the Australian Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme (CPRS) is commenced in 2010.
Carbon Dioxide (CO2) and other natural refrigerant systems offer a clear solution to reducing the carbon impact of such systems, by virtually eliminating the direct emissions component, and also reducing the indirect component due to increased energy efficiency. On its own, or in combination with other natural refrigerant gases, CO2 can provide viable alternative solutions to many applications in which the use of HFCs currently dominates.
Refrigeration and air-conditioning systems based on Carbon Dioxide as refrigerant, whilst being established in Europe, are in their infancy in Australia, but environmental and political pressure towards the adoption of these technologies on a wide scale are substantial.
The Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme likely in Australia will have a significant positive impact on the up-take of CO2 and other natural refrigerants, as competing products (HFCs) will be directly affected by this scheme and hence their application will be substantially disadvantaged by carbon costs. This represents a world first, as similar earlier European carbon trading systems did not include HFCs, and regulators in Europe have relied upon GWP-based taxation systems and other restrictions to limit the use of HFCs.
eCO2 Technologies is an engineering company that develops and designs refrigeration systems primarily using Carbon Dioxide and other natural refrigerants independently or in conjunction with its strategic and business partners. eCO2 Technologies provides products and services to the refrigeration, air-conditioning and related industries that relate to the application of CO2 and other natural refrigerants.
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