European Union: new projections regarding CO2 emissions

A  report published on behalf of the European Partnership for Energy and the Environment (EPEE) by French research organizations ARMINES/ERIE at the end of 2011 reveals that CO2 eq. emissions from refrigeration, air-conditioning and heat pump equipment in EU-27 have decreased by over 13% since 1990 and could decrease even further  (15-60%) over the next two decades.

Regulations on ozone-depleting substances and fluorinated gases (F-gases) made a strong impact on refrigerant figures despite an increase in the overall amount of refrigerant. The methodology used for the future emission scenarios was based on modelling of the existing base of equipment and expected market growth, according to parameters such as equipment lifetime, refrigerant charge, emission rates, recovery efficiency at system end of life, refrigerant in use, retrofitting, markets and equipment production.

The report claims that in the EU alone, CO2 eq. emissions have decreased from 170 million tonnes in 1990 to 147 million tonnes in 2010 despite an increase in the refrigerant bank from 200 000 tonnes in 1990 to about 510 000 tonnes in 2010. According to 2 different scenarios, the refrigerant bank will increase from 510 000 tonnes to 800 000-900 000 tonnes between 2010 and 2030. However, CO2 eq. emissions are expected to decrease from 147 million tonnes in 2010 to 124 million tonnes in 2030 and even to 57 million tonnes if a more aggressive introduction of low-GWP refrigerants is envisaged.