Treasure Valley Grocery Store HFC's
The Environmental Protection Agency created a new policy in May 2016, SNAP, that is amended under the Clean Air Act of 1990 and requires the phase out of the hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) R-22 because of its high global warming potential (GWP). Finding and using alternatives with a low GWP is important in helping combat climate change and reduce risks to human health. Though there is a switch away from the HFC R-22, this does not mean that grocery stores are using environmentally friend HFC alternatives, prompting our research question. Do local grocery stores use refrigerants with the lowest global warming potential? We partnered with the Boise Co-ops located in Boise and Meridian and the Canyon County Co-op. We collected refrigerant information for each store and analyzed their leakage rate to determine their global warming potential. Through our research the refrigerant systems of Treasure Valley grocery stores have an average leakage rate of 2-3%, which is below the qualifications to be Green Chill certified. These stores have transitioned from R-22 to refrigerants with a lower GWP: R-404A, R-407A, and R-134A. Through our data and analysis of alternatives, we see an opportunity for local grocery stores to switch to different HFC refrigerant with even a lower global warming potential, such as R-152A.
Triolo, Rebekah; Parker, Jace; and Clark, Matt, "Treasure Valley Grocery Store HFC's" (2017). 2017 Undergraduate Research and Scholarship Conference.
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