Puron Refrigerant from Carrier Offers Solution to R-22 Phase Out
The year 2010 marks an important U.S. milestone for ozone protection with the phase out of R-22, an ozone depleting refrigerant used in some new air-conditioning systems for more than four decades. To meet this environmental challenge, Carrier Corp., a unit of United Technologies Corp. (NYSE:UTX), introduced non-ozone depleting alternative cooling solutions with Puron refrigerant, which was approved in 1997 by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
Prior to Puron refrigerant, most residential air conditioners and heat pumps used R-22 refrigerant, a chlorine-containing refrigerant that can contribute to depletion of the earth’s ozone layer, according to the KTH-EGI Phaseout of R22 Refrigerant Study,
“In just 15 months, the widely used R-22 refrigerant can no longer be used in new cooling systems, but Carrier has been ready since 1996 when we introduced residential non-ozone depleting cooling systems,” said Chris Nelson, vice president of sales and marketing for Carrier Residential and Light Commercial Systems. “Today, Carrier’s environmentally sound systems with Puron refrigerant cool nearly 3 million homes throughout the U.S.”
Beginning in 2010, the U.S. will require all residential air conditioner and heat pump manufacturers to produce systems that use only non-ozone-depleting refrigerants in accordance with the U.S. Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990. Although the Clean Air Act allows for R-22 to be manufactured in diminishing quantities through 2020 to service existing systems, published reports indicate that service demands may outstrip supply by 2015; potentially causing the price for this refrigerant to rise dramatically as availability declines, similar to what occurred in the automotive industry with the phase-out of R-12.
Nelson explained, “Because of the potential increase in the price of R-22 and the impending total phase out, consumers considering a new home comfort system should consider the unit’s refrigerant much as they would a SEER rating or ENERGY STAR label. By choosing higher efficiency air-conditioner and heat pump equipment that use Puron refrigerant, consumers will be able to enjoy lower operating costs and environmentally sound operation while protecting themselves from potentially rising service costs associated with R-22 based systems.”
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