13 Dec 2013

Samoa symposium accelerates refrigerant phase out

5:24 am on 13 December 2013

The United Nations Environment Programme says the Pacific's progress on phasing out old refrigerants is a leading example to other regions on the global stage.

The Samoa government and the UNEP recently hosted a refrigeration symposium to accelerate the phase out of ozone depleting refrigerants containing hydrochloroflurocarbons.

The Pacific co-ordinator of the UNEP, Artie Dubrie, says the phase-out is a key part of meeting international obligations under the Montreal Protocol.

She says workers are learning how to manage older refrigerants safely as they switch to new safer alternatives and a lot of work is going into educating technicians and refrigeration engineers.

"So that they will have the skills to move into more environmentally friendly alternatives taking into consideration that these technologies should be free from any impact on the fragile stratospheric ozone layer. They should also be climate friendly as well as energy efficient."

Artie Dubrie says the air conditioning and refrigeration sector is a critical component in the socio-economic life of island states and the change has implications for many businesses including tourism, fisheries, food suppliers and governments.