We all know that these are interesting times in Refrigerationland. CFCs are history, HCFCs are on their way out, and HFCs are being scrutinized and phased down; dozens of new refrigerants are in the works or have already arrived on the scene; naturals are poised to claim a bigger share of the market; we’re in the Paris agreement and then we’re out, and no one knows what that might mean for the Kigali Amendment; and the Department of Energy is always lurking about, ramping up efficiency standards.
Amending energy conservation and test procedure standards
March 13, 2017
On Jan. 6, the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) published concurrent and identical proposed and direct final rules amending energy conservation standards for consumer central air conditioners and heat pumps.
White House chief of staff, Reince Priebus, issued a memorandum declaring a government-wide freeze on new or pending regulations. The HVAC industry has generally reacted positively to this news, feeling that this freeze gives HVAC organizations more time to explain to the administration why these regulations should not be published.
New efficiency regulations set to go into effect in less than one year
January 23, 2017
The rooftop air conditioner standards — which will cover new units found on low-rise buildings, like hospitals, schools, and big-box stores — will take effect in two phases, increasing minimum efficiency by about 10 percent as of Jan. 1, 2018, and by 25-30 percent as of Jan. 1, 2023.
Three main, key issues that impacted most contractors, manufacturers, distributors, and organizations included the 92 percent mandate, regional standards enforcement, and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) Significant New Alternatives Policy (SNAP) refrigeration alternatives.
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) released the agency’s second annual analysis of how changes in America’s energy profile are affecting national employment in key sectors of the economy. By administering a new supplemental survey to over 30,000 energy sector employers, the Department’s 2017 U.S. Energy and Employment Report (USEER) tracked dramatic growth in several key sectors of the U.S. economy in 2016.
As part of the Manufacturing USA initiative, the Department of Energy announced its new Reducing Embodied-energy and Decreasing Emissions (REMADE) Institute, which will be headquartered in Rochester, New York and led by the Sustainable Manufacturing Innovation Alliance.