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USA:  Following the EPA’s $300,000 fine imposed on Enviro-Safe Refrigerants for marketing and selling unapproved flammable hydrocarbon refrigerants as substitutes for ozone-depleting refrigerants. Vice President Randy Price has responded to the EPA press release saying, “Enviro-Safe was disappointed to read EPA’s press release, which gave a very inaccurate picture of Enviro-Safe and its operations.”

Price said in a statement released on Monday that “Enviro-Safe Refrigerants, Inc. has been and still is operating in full compliance with all environmental regulations and believes it has never sold its refrigerant products without EPA approval when such approval was required.

“Since the EPA regulations were adopted in 1994 as part of the United States’ commitment to the Montreal Protocol to reduce global warming, Enviro-Safe has been selling its refrigerants throughout the world and in the USA."

The EPA’s involvement with Enviro-Safe originated because of competition, Price continued.

“Although EPA’s regulations have not changed significantly since 1994, EPA recently took aim at Enviro-Safe because our competitors had complained to EPA that Enviro-Safe’s products were taking market share and argued to EPA that it should require Enviro-Safe products to be approved,” he said. “Although having sold its products for nearly 20 years, Enviro-Safe voluntarily decided nearly one year ago to not sell two of its refrigerant products. EPA’s press release inaccurately states that Enviro-Safe just now agreed not to sell two products, when in fact Enviro-Safe has voluntarily not sold those two products in the USA for nearly the past year."

A consent decree agreed by Enviro-Safe specifically provides and recognizes the company does not agree with EPA’s findings, the release continues, and that it will continue to be able to sell the vast majority of its current product line.

Related Article

Enviro-Safe Refrigerants deemed Not Safe

 

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USA:  Enviro-Safe Refrigerants, Inc., of Pekin, Illinois, has agreed to pay a $300,000 fine and cease the sale and marketing of two unapproved flammable hydrocarbon refrigerants as substitutes for ozone depleting substances (ODS). 

According to the complaint, Enviro-Safe allegedly violated Clean Air Act requirements through the sale and marketing of two flammable hydrocarbon refrigerant products, ES 22a and ES 502a, as substitutes for ODS without providing the requisite information to EPA for review and approval. EPA has not approved any flammable hydrocarbon as a replacement for ODS in systems not specifically designed for flammable refrigerants and has warned that use of flammable refrigerants in those systems presents a risk of fire or explosion.

“With this settlement, Enviro-Safe will pay a penalty, stop its nationwide sales of unapproved flammable refrigerants and ozone depleting substances, and notify consumers of potential safety hazards from these products,” said Assistant Attorney General John C. Cruden of the Department of Justice’s Environment and Natural Resources Division. “This civil action illustrates how the requirements of the Clean Air Act guard consumer safety and the health of our environment each and every day.”

“The actions Enviro-Safe will be required to take under this consent decree will protect consumers and the environment from a potentially dangerous product,” said Regional Administrator Susan Hedman of EPA.

In addition to paying a penalty and halting non-compliant sales, the company will also state on the label of any flammable refrigerant, its website and other marketing materials that the refrigerant is “flammable to an open flame or spark” and to “proceed with caution if used in systems designed for non-flammable refrigerants.” Labels must also include any use restrictions for approved substitutes. The company will notify by mail all known past customers that purchased products labeled “ES 12a,” “ES 22a” and “ES 502a” of potential safety hazards associated with such products.

The consent decree is subject to a 30-day comment period and final approval by the court.

Related Article:

EPA press release 'inaccurate' claims Enviro-Safe VP

 

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ITALY:  Five maintenance engineers are being investigated for suspected arson over the blaze that ripped through Rome’s Fiumicino airport eight days ago.

The engineers, who are employed by a company in charge of the maintenance of the airport’s air conditioning units, had been installing an air conditioning unit in a room in order to stop an electrical panel from overheating, Il Fatto Quotidiano reported. The unit however was left switched off, as it hadn’t been connected to an external power source.

The fire which reportedly broke out in the room ripped through Terminal 3 of the airport, devastating the shopping area, which is home to a string of upmarket boutiques.

Hundreds of flights were cancelled as a result and thousands of passengers had their travel plans wrecked.

The terminal, which is one of four at the airport, serves flights to European countries outside the Schengen no-borders zone and destinations further afield with the exception of Israel and the United States.

Three airport employees were treated for smoke inhalation but no serious injuries were reported.

 

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Round-up:  It's been a busy week for the Fridgehub team with lots of bizzar events in the world of air conditioning, some serious and some not so. So we thought we'd give our Facebook followers a quick roundup of the some of the worst and best bits.

Following all of your comments over the death of two repairmen when an air conditioner they were working on exploded it appears although unrelated that it's happened again, this time in Vietnam.

One person was killed and two others were seriously injured in a explosion in the southern province of Binh Duong. 

A resident reported a huge explosion and flying debris when an air conditioner in a nearby premises exploded killing the engineer who was working on the unit at the time. Police reports say the cause of the blast could be the company workers' negligence while recharging the air conditioner with gas.

Meanwhile in Spain an engineer had to be rescued by firefighters on the roof of an office building in Los Bermejales this week.

Emergency services were called out when the worker suffered injuries and burns when the air conditioning unit on the roof he was working on exploded. His injuries were caused by flying debris from the explosion which reports also say also injured a pedestrian who was walking past the building at the time.

The cause of the explosion is still being investigated.

Finally, if you're thinking of travelling to U.S. on your summer holidays, beware of doing any investigative repairs to your air conditioning.

An engineer found more than they bargained for whilst on a call-out to a broken down A/C unit.

When removing the cover of the unit he came face to face with a snake that was coiled up inside. Fortunately for him the snake had inadvertently electrocuted itself on the capacitor.

The engineer said he sees snakes in places like this about 15 times per year on the job, but said he encounters other animals too.

What would you do if you saw this?

Well that's it folks and just remember, Keep calm but be careful out there.

 

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JAPAN: Daikin Industries Ltd has today announced the recall of more than 30,000 air conditioning units and air purifiers due to faulty motors that can catch fire.

No accidents or injuries had been reported, the Osaka-based firm said. The announcement raises the number of units recalled in Japan to over 870,000.

The latest recall involves 30,416 air conditioners made between August 2006 and February 2007, and 3,270 air purifiers produced in August 2006.

 

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UK:  Following a review by parent company Nortek of its European operations, Eaton-Williams has announced it intends to axe production of its Qualitair and Colman product lines to concentrate on their air handling, humidification, Data Centre and Service offerings.

The move to restructure Eaton-Williams is expected to lead to a number of redundancies across its sites in Stoke on Trent, Edenbridge and Oxford.

Coleman Moducel is best known amongst the refrigeration fraternity for their production of refrigeration packs for Sainsbury's in the 1980/90sThe decision comes following Nortek’s acquisition of Reznor LLC in 2014, which supplies heating products.

In a statement Nortek said: "There are considerable synergies between these businesses both in the markets served and the operations. Both businesses are focused on maximising service and improving their ability to deliver value to customer business.

"There will be some restructuring across the Eaton-Williams business but this will ensure a stronger more agile approach leveraging the combined strengths of the Nortek Global HVAC division within Europe."

Eaton-Williams has said the restructuring across the business will ensure a stronger more agile approach leveraging the combined strengths of the Nortek Global HVAC division within Europe.

Established over 30 years ago, Qualitair was one of the first British manufacturers of standard air conditioning products and was acquired by Eaton-Williams in 1993.

 

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UK:  The UK's leading independent distributor of air conditioning products amp, has announced the launch of their loyalty reward programme amp Diamonds.

The initiative, which amp launched last week in partnership with Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, gives new and existing customers the ability to collect points on MHI purchases which can be redeemed at some of the biggest brands, including Amazon, John Lewis, Red Letter Days, Hotel Voucher Shop and Marks & Spencer. Customers will also enjoy exclusive business benefits, such as extended product warranties and marketing cashback.

Polly McConachie, co-­founder of amp, says, "We're proud to launch this exciting reward programme offering both existing and new customers unique benefits when they purchase MHI products from amp.

We have carefully selected a range of retailers to work with, and we plan to offer a wider choice moving forward so there will be something for everyone". McConachie continues, "Teaming up with Mitsubishi Heavy Industries to launch amp Diamonds and offering our customers such a broad range of rewards is something we are extremely proud of. It's free to join the programme, and we anticipate very high uptake.

We have established ourselves as leaders in the industry by providing outstanding service and expertise to our customers since launching the company in 1989. The rewards programme is just one of the exciting announcements we look forward to sharing this year".

Membership is split into two levels: Diamond Partner and Diamond Select Partner. Customers who qualify for the Diamond Partner level will see their standard MHI warranties extended from 3 to 5 years for both parts and labour allowances. The warranties for Diamond Select Partners will increase to 6 years.

The amp Diamonds loyalty programme officially launched across the UK last week. Customers can find more information and sign up at www.ampdiamonds.co.uk.

amp diamonds the new air conditioning loyalty scheme from amp air conditioning

About amp Air Conditioning:

Established in 1989, amp Air Conditioning is the largest independent air conditioning system distributor in the UK. The company provides air conditioning products and solutions to qualified, F­-Gas ­registered air conditioning installers and consultants. Working with som

e of the most advanced systems on the market, it supplies and supports three of the world's leading brands: Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Toshiba and Fujitsu. As one of the UK's most respected air conditioning suppliers, amp offers excellent product knowledge, technical know­how and first­ class customer service.

From state­-of-­the-­art split systems to energy­ efficient VRF systems and integrated advanced controls, amp has the expertise necessary to tailor optimal solutions in virtually any application, including residential, commercial and corporate.

 

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UK:  HSS has announced the aquisition of Andover-based All Seasons Hire Ltd for £11.4m.

All Seasons who specialise in the supply and installation of temporary heating and cooling equipment and who also have satellite operations in Dartford and Birmingham, reported a turnover of £4.9m making an operating profit of £1.3m in the last 12 months to 31 March 2015.

Chris Davies, Chief Executive Officer of HSS, said: “HSS have a longstanding and successful relationship with All Seasons as a supplier to our OneCall business.

“Their product range is highly complementary to our existing smaller-scale heating and air conditioning rental business and is a strong addition to our Specialist division.

“Large-scale temporary heating and cooling capabilities are particularly valuable for facilities management clients and this acquisition strengthens our position as a one of the major HVAC rental companies in the UK.”

Founder and Managing Director Kelvin Fogwill will continue to lead the business for HSS and the All Seasons brand name will be retained.

 

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EUROPE:  The European organisation of air-conditioning, refrigeration and heat pumps contractors AREA, has announced that CRACA, the Croatian Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Association, and EKL, the Estonian Refrigeration Association are the latest organisations to become members which now counts 22 members in 19 countries.

CRACA was created 3 years ago with the mission of contributing to the improvement of the HVC&R and heat pump sector in Croatia, where technology and legislation are developing considerably. CRACA working areas include collaboration with public authorities on regulations and standards, lifelong learning, fgas certification, technical support, international collaboration...

Tonko Curko, President of CRACA, said: “AREA and CRACA share a mission and objectives. AREA is the best forum to exchange ideas, knowledge and experience and also to be at the source of market information.”

EKL counts 30 members and is active on standardisation (Estonian Centre for Standardisation), qualifications (Estonian Qualification Authority) and education (Tallinn Industrial Education Centre). It also cooperates closely with the Estonian Ministry of the Environment. After taking part in the AREA autumn meeting last year in Nuremberg, EKL decided to apply for membership. “Membership in AREA will enhance EKL’s international profile”, said Imre Soorand, President of EKL.

“I am delighted to have CRACA and EKL within our membership. AREA’s network continues to grow and now includes 22 member associations spreading over 19 European countries, 18 of which are in the EU”, said Per Jonasson, President of AREA.

For further information about AREA contact: info@area-eur.be or visit www.area-eur.be 

 

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UK:  Following yesterday's General Election result Dearman, the clean cold technology company, is calling on the UK Government to support the future development and manufacture of clean technologies.

The call follows last months Supreme Court ruling, which ordered the government to make clear it's plans for tackling the UK’s air pollution problem, after the UK was found to be in breach of the EU air quality directive, which came into effect in 2010.

Toby Peters, Senior Group Managing Director, Dearman commented, “The urgent issues of air quality and energy security must be addressed at policy level. There is an opportunity for the new Government to support the development and manufacture of clean technologies that will have significant, quick, positive environmental and economic impacts. In doing so, the UK could make a name for itself in the cleantech industry, bringing clean cold technologies to the global marketplace. With continued investment in industry-led research, such as the Energy Systems Catapult and the proposed Energy Research Accelerator, we could see this new industry flourish, creating thousands of jobs in the process."

Dearman’s zero-emission technology is an alternative to diesel-fuelled transport refrigeration, which is disproportionately polluting and contributes to poor air quality. Replacing 13,000 trailers' diesel refrigeration units with zero-emission systems would prevent 1,800 tonnes of nitrogen oxides from being emitted – equivalent to taking 1.2 million modern diesel cars off the road.

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