As the curtain comes down on another year, we take a look back at what made 2016 such an eventful year in the refrigeration and air conditioning sector.

It’s certain that the bow waves of Brexit, the election of Donald Trump and global agreements on the phase down of HFCs are likely to ripple out through 2017 and beyond, but readers of the Cooling Post were more esoteric in their interests.

In another record-breaking year, the Cooling Post welcomed over 180,000 unique visitors in 2016 from an extraordinary 220 countries. Total visits numbered close on 340,000, with visitors consuming over 620,000 pages.

The biggest story of the year by far was the conviction and jailing of an Ohio man for illegally venting R22 refrigerant to atmosphere. While Europe continues to soft pedal over violations to the F-gas regulations, Shannon Wayne Harrold, a 48-year-old man from Glenford, Ohio, was sentenced in the US to 54 months in prison and ordered to pay $29,045 in restitution for violating the Clean Air Act. The story of his conviction attracted a staggering 7,886 readers.

It was perhaps predictable that the second most popular story was our exclusive on the largest HFO chiller installation of its kind in the world. Four 10MW Trane Series E CenTraVac water-cooled centrifugal chillers using the low GWP HFO R1233zd(E) were selected to replace the ageing R22 chillers serving the Channel Tunnel.

The top 10 stories of 2016:

1. Ohio man jailed for venting refrigerant
2. HFO chillers to cool the Channel Tunnel
3. Mechanical joint company Reflok closes
4. Daikin’s new US facility breaks records
5. Space Air to seek administration
6. US places bans on R404A and R134a
7. Carrier debuts R1233zd(E) chiller
8. Daikin set to buy refrigeration firm Zanotti
9. R134a faces chiller ban from 2025
10. Chemours proposes R123 “drop-in”

The staff of the Cooling Post wish you all a healthy, happy, peaceful and prosperous 2017.