ATLANTA — Entries are now being accepted for the 2020 ASHRAE and OzonAction of the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) Lower GWP Innovation Awards. The award promotes innovative design, research, and practice by recognizing people who have developed or implemented innovative technological concepts applied in developing countries to minimize global warming potential (GWP) through refrigeration and air conditioning applications. The award, offered for the second year, is part of ASHRAE-UNEP OzonAction joint workplan for 2019-2020 under the global cooperation agreement established by both parties in 2007.

“With the phaseout and phasedown of many refrigerants currently used in developing countries, it is critical that the refrigeration and air conditioning industry promote a rapid transition to energy efficient solutions that lessen the impact of ozone depletion and lowering global warming potential,” said ASHRAE President Darryl K. Boyce, P. Eng. “By identifying innovation, ASHRAE and UNEP believe the awards will hasten adoption of lower GWP technologies in developing countries.”

The award’s selection criteria include:

•           Description of innovation in field of lower-GWP refrigerants;

•           Confirmation project has been implemented in a developing country;

•           Extent of need;

•           Environmental impact achieved including specific reference to the GWP chemicals’ contribution; and

•           Description of further application in developing countries from both the technology and economic perspectives, including how the innovation is financially feasible to be replicated.


“We are living at a watershed moment under the Montreal Protocol when developing countries must find long-term solutions to replace HCFC refrigerants while simultaneously minimizing climate impacts,” said James S. Curlin, acting head/network and policy manager for OzonAction. “It is vital to empower the research community to identify new approaches and alternative refrigerants that work for those countries. UNEP OzonAction is proud to join with ASHRAE to select projects that are proposing innovative approaches that address the ozone, climate, and energy dimensions.”

The entry period ends Sept. 1. Information about the award and the online submission form can be found at Entries will be judged by an international jury of experts in the field of refrigerant research and management selected by ASHRAE and UNEP.

The individuals who worked on projects selected for 2020 awards will be announced at Montreal Protocol-related events. ASHRAE and UNEP will also team up to disseminate information to specialists and government officials in developing countries about the projects selected to raise awareness of successful technology applications.

In 2019, ASHRAE and UNEP identified five projects – two residential applications and three commercial/industrial applications for awards.

•           Low Charge Ammonia Vapor Compression Refrigeration System implemented in India;

•           HFC-161 Application for High Cooling Capacity Household Air Conditioners implemented in China;

•           Packaged Chillers with Integrated Air Handling Units Using HFC-32 and HC-290 implemented in Saudi Arabia;

•           CO2 Transcritical Refrigeration System for a Hot-and-Humid Region implemented in Thailand; and

•           Low Charge Propane Chiller for a Supermarket Refrigeration System implemented in Brazil.