Something in the air

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The pressure to make business activity more environmentally friendly is intruding into more and more areas of logistics operations. So it is hardly a surprise that the latest government move is on air conditioning.

And while government proposals are often greeted with fear and loathing, this time it has got the support of a major supplier of heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems. Jet Environmental says it welcomes interim advice on tackling climate change, unveiled by the Committee on Climate Change, which includes the recommendation to reduce the business use of air conditioning.

The committee has recommended that emissions from harmful greenhouse gases be reduced by at least 80 per cent by 2050. In a letter to the secretary of state for energy and climate change, Ed Miliband, the committee said that the 80 per cent target should apply on average across all sectors of the UK economy and is achievable at an affordable cost of between one and two per cent of GDP in 2050.

One of the major options in the committee’s advice, published last month, is to seek improvements in energy efficiency from buildings and industry. Key to this reduction is a cut in the use of air conditioning and cooling systems which generate significant carbon emissions.

The Committee on Climate Change is an independent body created to provide expert analysis and advice on how the UK can meet its climate change goals. It’s responsible for advising on the UK’s carbon budgets for the period to 2050, and for reporting on progress in reducing emissions to meet these budgets. It is the first body of its kind in the world and is being set up under the Climate Change Bill.

Jet specialises in low carbon climate control solutions for large volume, pharmaceutical, industrial and commercial buildings.

Managing director Robert Simpson says: “It’s about time organisations like the Committee on Climate Change as well as the government advocated a change in HVAC specification and usage.

Key to this reduction is a cut in the use of energy hungry air conditioning and cooling systems.”Business and industry, especially those owners and operators of warehouses and other buildings which rely heavily on inefficient, poorly controlled HVAC systems, need to stand up and take notice that they must take action.”

He claims that a system like Jet’s could replace the need for air conditioning in an environmentally friendly way, and many of the targeted buildings could comfortably meet the carbon reduction aims by 2020.

Are we approaching a point where air conditioning will no longer be cool?

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