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How the Middle East is Increasing Energy Efficiency

While summer might seem like a long way off right now, there's no time like the present to become more energy efficient.
Now that it’s 2017, the 197 member countries of the Montreal Protocol are looking ahead to action that must be taken to fulfill their commitments.

The international treaty is designed to protect the environment by phasing out ozone-depleting substances like hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs), as well as high-global-warming-potential (high-GWP) substances such as hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs).

In the Middle East, these commitments are especially relevant. After a record-setting summer of extreme heat, the Protocol commitments align with changes that are designed to keep the region’s temperatures moderate and increase energy efficiency.

That is no small task: In Saudi Arabia, for example, air conditioners and refrigeration systems account for more than 70 percent of electricity consumption. With 1.5 million new homes needed to keep up with population growth, energy demand is anticipated to double by 2030.

With the commitment deadlines on the horizon, the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) is engaged in assisting the region. “The UNEP is working with these countries to help them successfully transition to more low-GWP blowing agent technology that reduces emissions and achieves energy goals as required under the Montreal Protocol and in close partnership with other implementing agencies,” said Khaled Klaly, UNEP Program Officer.

One solution: Foam, including Solstice® Liquid Blowing Agent (LBA).

How does it work? When used in building applications such as roofs and walls, foam blowing agents determine the insulation’s density, structure and thermal performance, which in turn affects its energy efficiency.

The changes are becoming reality. Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Municipal and Rural Affairs requires thermal insulation for all new buildings..To achieve the desired level of thermal insulation, the industry needs to convert to low-GWP, high-performance solutions like Honeywell’s Solstice LBA and Solstice Gas Blowing Agent (GBA).

Both Solstice LBA and GBA have GWPs of 1 or lower (equal to or lower than carbon dioxide), so they offer energy savings and also help users reduce their greenhouse gas emissions.

Technical Supplies & Services Co. (TSSC) in the United Arab Emirates recently launched a new insulated metal panel for walls and roofs made with Solstice LBA. The company specifically chose LBA because of its thermal properties, which would create long-term energy savings for end users.

“We are committed to producing energy-efficient materials that help our customers’ transition to next-generation products,” said Miro Donabedian, general manager, Polyurethane and Refrigeration systems, TSSC. “Honeywell’s technology enables the panels to provide superior thermal performance with significantly lower impact on the environment.”

By phasing out high-GWP foam blowing agents, the result is a reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and more and consistent indoor temperatures, which in turn equals energy savings for all users.

Josh Byerly
Performance Materials and Technologies