Rutger-UniversityUSA: The US EPA has awarded $158,000 to Rutgers University to help the food industry in Newark reduce its releases of refrigerant R22.

The funding will enable Rutger, New Jersey’s State university,  to provide training and technical assistance to food production, processing, storage and distribution companies in the Newark, New Jersey area. The university will assist food companies in switching from R22 to ammonia.

Although R22 is being phased out across the country, many smaller companies are thought to lack the knowledge and resources to switch to ammonia. This project will also provide source reduction training and technical assistance on energy efficiency and water conservation to these food supply facilities.

“With cold storage capacity at Port Newark expected to double over the next ten years, this programme has the potential to significantly cut the amount of chlorodifluoromethane used in the Newark area,” said EPA regional administrator Judith A Enck.

Rutgers will work with the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection to raise awareness of this project through direct contact and information sharing sessions targeted at the food and logistics industries in Essex and Hudson counties. Training of specific companies will then begin in June 2016.

This grant is part of the approximately $5m in grants the EPA awards each year to prevent pollution across the nation.