05 Mar 2019 Editorial

UN Environment-OzonAction Joins World Refrigeration Day Partnership

PARIS, FRANCE, 28 February — United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) OzonAction has joined the growing coalition of partners around the world that are supporting World Refrigeration Day (WRD), a newly established annual celebration of the refrigeration, air conditioning and heat-pump sector’s myriad contributions to societal goals – including environmental protection. The first celebration, “WRD-2019,” will take place this 26 June and thereafter on the same day each year. OzonAction became a WRD supporter given the extremely important role that this sector plays in ensuring the continued success of the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer.

The announcement was made jointly on 18 February by Dr. Shamila Nair-Bedouelle, Head of OzonAction, and Stephen Gill, WRD Secretariat, during the plenary session of the Second Global Inter-Regional and Parallel Networks Meeting for National Ozone Officers recently in Paris. Organized by OzonAction, that meeting addressed national Montreal Protocol obligations and included current priority topics such as promotion of low-global warming potential refrigerants in developing countries and encouraging best practices in the refrigeration servicing sector. WRD-2019 offers an excellent opportunity to raise awareness of how refrigeration, air conditioning, and heat pump technology and science contribute to modern life and the protection of human health and the environment.

The establishment of WRD is an initiative of industry trade associations and professional bodies that represent many of the millions of women, men, and enterprises who work in this key sector across the world. The supporters include organisations from Africa, Australia, Europe, India, the Middle East, New Zealand, Pakistan, Philippines, Thailand, and the United States.  OzonAction is the first United Nations body to join this coalition, which have all united in establishing June 26th as World Refrigeration Day.

The term ‘refrigeration’ is used by WRD in its widest sense as the process of achieving and maintaining a required temperature below that of its surroundings. An example of refrigeration is the preservation and distribution of perishable food products. Refrigeration systems are also used extensively for providing thermal comfort to human beings by means of air-conditioning.  Similarly, heat-pumps are devices that take heat from one source and move it to another location.

Ayman Eltalouny, OzonAction’s Coordinator of International Partnerships, said: “We fully commend the idea of World Refrigeration Day for its creative novelty and its contribution to bringing attention to the refrigeration and air conditioning industry and its involvement in our daily life. UNEP OzonAction is very interested in cooperating with international partners and is delighted to see that WRD is endorsed by many heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration associations around the globe, which will help to further promote it across developing countries.”

Stephen Gill of the WRD Secretariat said: “We are delighted to be partnering with UNEP OzonAction to promote WRD using the themes ‘Sound Management of Refrigerants’ and ‘Diversity’. Refrigeration connects many of the UN Sustainable Development Goals, so WRD is an opportunity to raise awareness of it.”
All of the supporting organsiations have indicated that they will be celebrating the day as an annual event. For its part, OzonAction will encourage all National Ozone Units in developing countries to join in the celebrations, and it will work with the WRD Secretariat to jointly develop tools to help with the national celebrations. This will include seminars and workshops, on-site training campaigns, skills competitions, special events for consultants, contractors and end‐users, technical brochures and promotional material.

A website is currently under construction but nearing completion and should be live in the next few weeks:  www.worldrefrigerationday.org  Until then, events and updates may be found through twitter @worldrefday

Any organisation or individual wishing to support World Refrigeration Day can contact [email protected]