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Website pinpoints “HFC-free” supermarkets

USA: The Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA) is marking Earth Day, today, with the launch of a new website identifying US retailers committed to using HFC-free refrigeration systems.

Coinciding with the website launch, the EIA reveals that retailer Aldi US is to employ transcritical CO2 systems in 100 more stores this year.

“In a time of acute need for leadership on climate change, the US retail sector has remained a laggard in adopting climate-friendly cooling compared to their counterparts in rest of the developed world,” said Avipsa Mahapatra, the EIA climate campaign lead. “Smart companies, such as Aldi US, committed to rapidly scaling up energy efficient HFC-free technologies, demonstrate that it makes business and climate sense to lead in adopting future-proof refrigeration systems not reliant on potent super-pollutants.”

Aldi vice president Aaron Sumida confirmed the additions in 2019 having already adopted transcritical CO2 refrigeration systems in many of its new and remodeled stores.

“ALDI is deeply committed to reducing its refrigerant emissions and believes natural refrigerants are the best long-term solution for the planet,” he said.

Aldi US, along with Whole Foods, Target, Sprouts, and Ahold Delhaize USA, described as the leading retailers in reducing HFCs, are profiled on the new EIA website www.climatefriendlysupermarkets.org.

The site provides a map of supermarket locations in the US using “climate-friendly” cooling and highlights specific company actions in three key areas: adopting technologies, refrigerant management, and engaging in technical and policy dialogue.

“We commend this small group of companies for taking action, but there is much more US supermarkets can and must do,” said Christina Starr, climate policy analyst at EIA. “These leading companies represent just 15% of the sector, so there’s a big opportunity for more commitments to phase out the worst HFCs like R404A, adopt climate-friendly technologies, and join the EPA’s GreenChill Partnership to reduce leaks.”

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