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ICS Cool Energy encourages users to consider lower GWP refrigerants to offset continued price rise

With the cost of refrigerant gases rising at an unprecedented rate, a leading temperature control solutions manufacturer is encouraging refrigerant users to consider lower Global Warming Potential (GWP) alternatives, when possible. 

With the price of refrigerants such as R407C and R507 increasing dramatically over the last 12 months, particularly in the later stages of 2017, ICS Cool Energy is advising customers to changing – where possible – to low GWP refrigerants, which have offered greater price stability over the same period.

Despite the popularity of R407C and R507 amongst others, the increase in price is showing no signs of abating, and failing to switch to low GWP alternatives, such as R134A or R449A – when given the option – could cost users in excess of £50,000 per year.

The price rise coincides with direction under F-Gas legislation, which requires a reduction in the use of HFC refrigerants in favour of low GWP alternatives.

However, end-users must also be aware that low GWP refrigerants are not suitable for all applications, given the flammable, corrosive and toxicity challenges they pose.

Richard Metcalfe, Sales Director at ICS Cool Energy, comments: “The rise in refrigerant gas prices has not gone unnoticed over the last year. However, the rate of increase over the final months of 2017 in particular could cost end-users tens of thousands of pounds a year if left unchecked.

“While low GWP refrigerants are not suitable for all applications – given the need for specialist transport and storage arrangements – failing to take advantage of them where possible is likely to increase an end-user’s cooling costs significantly over the coming months and years.

“Refrigerant selection is certainly a minefield for end-users at the moment, and there is no ‘off the shelf’ solution; particularly for low temperature applications. As such, I would strongly advocate working closely with your temperature control provider. Doing so can ensure the right refrigerant is chosen which will not only provide safe and efficient operation, but will do so in the most cost-effective way.”


Join the Lighting Industry Academy as we look into lighting

The Lighting Industry Academy ‘popped up’ at Lux Live this year. Here the LIA delivered an educational programme, where delegates gained a greater understanding of the key aspects of the lighting industry.

We held two mornings of educational sessions, targeted at the Lux Live audience. The sessions helped provide the right level of understanding to support the choosing and using of the fantastic lighting products on show at the exhibition.

Due to its success and demand from the industry, the LIA are re-running the sessions for one day only.

So do you want to know what you should consider when evaluating and comparing lighting products?

Do you know how and where to use lighting products to get the best from them?

Want to learn more? Then join us at the Lighting Industry Academy in Telford on 31st January 2018, from 10 am to 1:30 pm.

As the lighting industry changes, how we learn about it needs to change too. Lighting education had been lacking for too long and was certainly not strong enough to support the skills needed for a fast moving and evolving lighting industry.

2016 saw the LIA take on this challenge and the Lighting Industry Academy opened its doors in the September of that year. It’s been a great first year and the LIA were delighted to be invited to bring the Academy to Lux Live.

What people had to say about the LIA Lighting Academy at Lux Live:-

“I did enjoy your LIA Lighting Academy on 15 November at Excel it was very informative and mind blowing, excellent speakers and brilliant content”.

“Academy sessions were very impressive and professional”

“I have to say it was a really worthwhile morning.   The knowledge passed on was great and the speakers were really good”

Cost LIA Member and Non-Member - £25+VAT, includes buffet lunch.


Priva UK comments on the Industrial Strategy: What are the implications for BEMS manufacturers?

It’s been a little while since the Industrial Strategy was released by the Business and Energy Secretary, Greg Clark MP. Gavin Holvey, UK and Ireland Sales Manager at Priva UK comments on the investment and policy details set out by the Government, and warns against losing impetus in the drive to a lower carbon, energy efficient future.

The last couple of months have seen the release of major ‘clean’, low carbon and efficiency policy announcements; with the Clean Growth Strategy in October, the Chancellor’s Budget and finally the Industrial Strategy, announced by the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy in November.

Mr. Holvey said, “It is crucial that world-leading innovators within the clean energy, energy efficiency and energy management space can continue to expand and develop technology, secure in the understanding of guaranteed investment and political support from government and Parliament.

“Embedded as we are within the energy sector we have intimate knowledge and experience of the influence of government policies across our customers’ businesses. We are particularly looking forward to seeing the impact that proposed government policies and investments have, such as the support for business and industry investment in R&D the government’s direct £725m investment in Challenge Fund programmes and the commitment to education in Science, Technology, Engineering & Maths (STEM) subjects. However, we are unlikely to see return on these immediately.

“In the short term, we need to see more action on the Paris 2015 targets to lower carbon emissions and move towards cleaner growth. According to the Industrial Strategy statement, by one estimate[1], the UK’s clean economy could grow at four times the rate of GDP.

“We will be monitoring the government’s action focused on growing the AI and data-driven economy. The Secretary of State stated that according, to a recent study[2] digital technologies, including AI, created a net total of 80,000 new jobs annually across a population similar to the UK. A separate study estimates[3] that AI could add £232bn to the UK economy by 2030.

Gavin Holvey concluded, “We hope that this presages a whole system approach, incorporating the Government investment and policies outlined above; harnessed with the potential of AI and the Transforming Construction programme; taking advantage of new techniques and existing technologies to build safer, healthier and more energy efficient places to live and work.”


[1] Ricardo Energy and Environment for the Committee on Climate Change (2017) ‘UK business opportunities of moving to a low carbon economy’ wp-content/uploads/2017/03/ED10039-CCC-UKBus-Opportunities-Draft-Final-Report-V7.pdf

[2] Mckinsey (2017), ‘Shaping the future of work in Europe’s 9 digital front-runner countries’ europe/shaping-the-future-of-work-in-europes-nine-digital-front-runner-countries

[3] PwC (2017), ‘Sizing the prize, PwC’s Global Artificial Intelligence Study: Exploiting the AI Revolution’ gx/en/issues/data-and-analytics/publications/artificial-intelligence-study.html

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