The National Ozone Unit (NOU) of Grenada is leading by example in the promotion of natural refrigerants in the refrigeration and air-conditioning sector. In Celebration of International Ozone Day 2011 on September 16, the NOU undertook the retrofitting of its relatively new R-134a refrigerator to hydrocarbon (R-600a) technology.

Hydrocarbons (HC), a natural refrigerant, is one of the low global warming potential (GWP) alternatives to ozone depleting refrigerants promoted in Grenada under its Hydrochlorofluorocarbon Phase-out Management Plan (HPMP). Hydrocarbons have long been identified as the refrigerant choice of the future because of its low ozone and global warming potentials and it greater energy efficiencies.

Determined to lead by example and to encourage others to follow, the NOU utilized the services of one of the senior local technicians, who was recently trained in Cuba in hydrocarbon technology to perform the retrofit, ensuring that the necessary good refrigeration practices and safety precautions were implemented.

The use of hydrocarbon technology is becoming more and more popular in Grenada since its introduction in 2006, especially in the domestic refrigeration and mobile air-conditioning sectors and in unitary mini-split systems.

Hydrocarbon refrigerators are now available for sale on the island; however, at the time of purchase none was available resulting in the NOU’s purchase of a R-134a unit. The National Ozone Unit continues to encourage consumers to invest in hydrocarbon technology in sectors where it is available.