The Cool Coalition – which includes environment ministers from Chile and Rwanda and foreign affairs from Denmark as well as heads of Danish engineering firms ENGIE and Danfoss and leaders from civil society, research and intergovernmental institutions – aims to inspire ambition, identify solutions and accelerate action on the transition to cleaner and more efficient cooling technologies
Many cooling technologies use refrigerants that can be 10,000 times more potent greenhouse gases than carbon dioxide.
The Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol – which started phasing down these gases, known as hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), this year – is expected to deliver almost 0.4°C of avoided warming from addressing these gases alone.
According to figures from the International Energy Agency (IEA), a combined strategy to phase down HFCs alongside improvements in energy efficiency can potentially double the climate benefits, while saving up to $2.9 trillion (£2.2tn) globally through 2050 by using less electricity.
Amidst rising temperatures and spending power, the number of air conditioners in use is expected to increase from 1.2 billion today to 4.5 billion by 2050.
If the world continues down this path, emissions from the sector are expected to grow 90% by 2050 over 2017 levels – that’s equivalent to almost one quarter of global emissions in 2017.
Joyce Msuya, Acting Executive Director of UN Environment and a key leader of the Coalition said: “Demand for cooling is growing, as it must if we are to provide equitable access to a technology that keeps our children healthy, vaccines stable, food nutritious and economies productive.
“But we also can’t allow emissions to get out of hand. The Cool Coalition offers a three-in-one opportunity to cut global warming, improve the lives of hundreds of millions of people and make huge financial savings.”