International Workshop on Alternative Technologies to HCFC-22 in Room Air-Conditioner Sector was held in Ningbo on October 30th, 2020. More than 100 representatives and experts from the Atmospheric Environment Department of the Ministry of Ecology and Environment (MEE), Foreign Environmental Cooperation Center of the Ministry of Ecology and Environment (FECO/MEE), United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), China Household Electrical Appliances Association (CHEAA) and relevant research institutions, industry, and enterprise, attended the workshop and comprehensively discussed the policies and technical issues of HCFC alternatives in air-conditioning.
Ms. Li Pei, deputy director general of the Atmospheric Environment Department of MEE, addressed that this year is the end of the "13th five-year plan" and the planning year of the "14th five-year plan". The ozone-layer protection and climate governance have entered a new stage in China. The implementation of the Montreal Protocol will be incorporated in the "14th five-year plan" of various departments, to strengthen government support for HCFCs elimination. At the same time, the Regulation on the Management of Ozone-depleting Substances is being revised and soliciting public opinions. The new regulation will incorporate HFCs into the supervision scope. In addition, MEE will also consider guiding the market promotion of environment-friendly refrigerant through labeling management, environmental certification, government procurement and other policies, to accelerate the elimination of controlled substances in the household appliances sector.
Ms. Zhou Guomei, executive director general of FECO/MEE, pointed out that the room air-conditioner sector took the lead in using propane (R290) refrigerant with zero ODP and low GWP. This technology route is the technical direction for the sustainable development of the sector in the future, which will make a great contribution to China and the global greenhouse gas emission reduction. China has submitted the 2021-2026 action plans for six consumption sectors, including room air-conditioner sector, to the Multilateral Fund secretariat, setting new goals for the next implementation phase. In the future, the sector should make full use of the existing alternative capacity, strengthen the technological development, improve the safety and market competitiveness of R290 products, and promote the marketization of R290.
UNIDO and GIZ delivered keynotes and technical reports via video. Mr. Ole Neilsen, from UNIDO, pointed out that R290 air-conditioners have great potential in the international market, and UNIDO and China will jointly develop R290 market. Mr. Philipp Munzinger, from GIZ, expressed that R290 split air-conditioners are getting more and more global attention and acceptance. Some European e-commerce platforms have begun to sell R290 split air-conditioners that made in China.
Then, the conference introduced the policy framework and overall implementation of the Montreal Protocol, as well as the progress of HCFC phase-out in the room air-conditioner sector and the next phase-out strategy. Industry experts also exchanged research ideas on R290 lubricating oil, history of R290 technology development, international environmental certification, progress on IEC60335-2-40 standard revision and HCFCs alternatives in refrigeration servicing sector.