The HVAC industry can sometimes have the reputation of not working together. This will happen with a three-step supply chain that rightfully looks out for their own self interests. However, that was not the case during a daylong meeting of the Joint Futures Committee last week.

Manufacturers, contractors, distributors, and association members all took time out of their busy schedules to contribute to the “Think Tank” that tried to solve problems that will affect the industry in the future.

Only time will tell if the ideas that came out of this year’s meeting will be implemented, but the Joint Futures committee has a pretty good track record. In the past 10 years, more than half of the recommendations from the committee have been embraced by industry associations.

Early recommendations were the impetus for ACCA developing and releasing the ANSI-recognized, industry-developed standards related to quality maintenance (ACCA 4 QM), quality installation (ACCA 5 QI), and quality home audit/improvement (ACCA 12 QH). Additionally, Air-Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute (AHRI) has undertaken its Alternative Refrigerants Evaluation Program (AREP-2) after a Joint Futures recommendation to explore alternative refrigerants to hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) under potential future pressure due to environmentalist concerns with global warming impacts.

A lot of times these events do not get their proper coverage. It is always easier to point out the negative rather than highlight the positive. The committee is doing important work and everyone in the industry should be grateful.