This project is funded by the European Union.

Jun 1, 2020

Cooling Emissions and Policy Synthesis Report

Publisher: International Energy Agency, United Nations Environment Programme

Efficient and climate friendly cooling is a crucial piece of the climate and sustainable development puzzle. We need cooling to protect vulnerable populations from heatwaves, keep vaccines viable and food fresh, and workforces productive. It is essential for equity and development, especially as climate change raises global temperatures. The global pandemic has emphasized just how important cooling is to society, with many stuck indoors in hot climates during lockdowns and global cooling infrastructure essential to storing and delivering an eventual vaccine. There is, however, a catch. There are an estimated 3.6 billion cooling appliances in use globally today, and that number is growing by up to 10 devices every second. This growth is set to increase the sector’s greenhouse gas emissions dramatically, further warming the planet. Air conditioners are a double burden. In most cases, they use hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), extremely potent greenhouse gases, and require significant energy to run. Without policy intervention, direct and indirect emissions from air conditioning and refrigeration are projected to rise 90 per cent above 2017 levels by the year 2050. This report lays out ways to resolve this dilemma by delivering efficient and climate friendly cooling for all – in particular by rapidly phasing down hydrofluorocarbons in the cooling sector and delivering cooling more efficiently through more efficient equipment and more efficient buildings. This report tells us there are many actions we can take to get cooling right. The Montreal Protocol’s Kigali Amendment to phase down HFC refrigerants. Proven policies such as minimum energy performance standards. National Cooling Action Plans. The integration of efficient cooling into enhanced Nationally Determined Contributions of the Paris Agreement. Transformative initiatives like the Cool Coalition. Moving on all of these offers us a chance to slow global warming, improve the lives of hundreds of millions of people, and realize huge financial savings. As nations invest in COVID-19 recovery, they need to ensure that they use their money wisely to reduce climate change, protect nature and reduce risks of further pandemics. Backing sustainable cooling can help to achieve all of these goals.”

We hope this report will help to raise awareness about one of the most critical and often neglected climate and development issues of our time. For policy makers, industry leaders and the general public, we hope it serves as an important guide to the role cooling can play in delivering on our climate and sustainable development goals. We need to seize this threein-one cooling opportunity. And we need to do it now.

Bilgi Merkezinde Ara