Recent developments on European and international level showcase that cooling is no longer a “forgotten” sector on the way towards carbon neutrality. With demand set to grow in the coming decades, and being essential for health, fresh and safe food, through to comfort and well-being, cooling contributes to many Sustainable Development Goals. EPEE, the voice of the heating and cooling industry in Europe, is committed to provide and promote sustainable solutions that are fit for the future, demonstrating the industry’s value to contribute to carbon neutrality.
Just this week at the UN Climate Action Summit, EPEE – along with the activities of the recently launched UN Environment Programme’s Cool Coalition – published a pledge on the cooling industry’s commitments on sustainable cooling. A few days later, at the EU’s Research and Innovation Days in Brussels, the association had once again the opportunity to emphasize its message. On this occasion Andrea Voigt, EPEE’s Director General, stated: “Cooling does not suffer from a lack of innovation or sustainable technologies. There are many efficient and sustainable solutions readily available that are only waiting to be scaled up and deployed. They are not just limited to the product level but are based on an integrated approach to cooling and heating in individual buildings up to entire cities. Our toolbox includes many solutions from heat recovery, thermal energy and heat pumps through to demand side flexibility providing stability to the grid as we move to renewable energy, and many more.”
Voigt added: “Whether it was at the Climate Summit in New York or at the EU’s R&I Days in Brussels, there was no doubt that this message, our message, is not an isolated one: there is an overwhelming consensus, across industries, that solutions and technologies are generally available to meet the 1.5°C target. It’s not a question of technological innovation. It’s a question of reaching the people. The gap between science, policy and people is huge and needs to be closed as a matter of urgency.”
As part of the activities EPEE members are undertaking to bridge this gap, EPEE will start a broader #CountOnCooling campaign including a White Paper, describing important steps to deliver sustainable cooling. This White Paper, which is planned to be officially launched at the 31st Meeting of the Parties to the Montreal Protocol in Rome, beginning of November, introduces a 5-step approach to (1) optimise the need for cooling, (2) improve the energy and resource efficiency of cooling equipment, (3) mitigate the climate impact of refrigerants, (4) address the investment cost for higher efficiency solutions, and (5) shift to renewable energy sources with an integrated approach.
The European Partnership for Energy and the Environment (EPEE) was founded in 2000, is headquartered in Brussels and is the voice of the refrigeration, air-conditioning and heat pump industry in Europe, currently representing 48 members from three continents – Asia, Europe and North America. EPEE members directly employ over 200,000 people and realise over 30 billion euros in annual turnover in the EU. EPEE member companies operate manufacturing sites and research and development facilities across the EU, which are leading innovation efforts in the global market.