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Earth Day 2018: Seize the Opportunity for Sustainability

Dean Landeche_Blog Dean Landeche | Marketing Cold Chain Leader
Emerson Commercial & Residential Solutions

Since 1970, people worldwide have gathered together every April 22nd for Earth Day to bring attention to issues regarding the health of our planet and ways in which all of us can work toward a healthier, more sustainable way of life and do our best to protect our environment.

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In the refrigeration space, obtaining regulatory compliance and furthering sustainability initiatives are ambitious but necessary tasks that various food retailers face in today’s industry climate. They are not intended to be perceived as challenges, but rather opportunities for businesses to work together to optimize facility operations and create a more environmentally friendly way of doing business. Here are three ways you can seize that opportunity and emphasize sustainability.

  1. Natural refrigerant renaissance

The regulatory climate may seem to be in a constant state of change, but one consistency remains:  carbon dioxide (R-744), propane (R-290) and ammonia (R-717) headline the list of refrigerants which can deliver regulatory compliance and align with corporate sustainability goals. While not perfect, these natural refrigerants are about as close to “future proof” as facility operators currently can get. As technology continues to improve, equipment manufacturers are working closely with forward-thinking companies to develop innovative solutions that have resulted in new, creative natural refrigeration applications.

  1. Using IoT to reduce energy consumption

Integrating HVAC, refrigeration and lighting systems into building automation and supervisory controls systems can help building operators gain insights into energy use and help reduce consumption. Companies like Emerson are working to create technologies that can be easily integrated into existing systems and buildings, helping boost sustainability efforts without incurring costly construction and installation time. Combining these new technologies with smart strategies has opened the door for a bright and sustainable future in the refrigeration industry.

  1. A boom in big data

Using data gathered from remote monitoring services can be used to help reduce waste, increase efficiency, and help ensure food freshness and safety. These remote monitoring services gather data from sensors, monitor conditions like product and case temperature, and provide real-time information on critical store equipment such as energy use, equipment operating condition, refrigerant leaks and more. Utilizing the data gathered by remote monitoring allows companies to simultaneously safeguard food and further sustainability efforts.

Promoting sustainability solutions and tactics shouldn’t only be saved for special occasions like Earth Day. Developing your own “good neighbor” story and making a positive impact on the environment are continual jobs. The opportunity to develop sustainability initiatives that become the industry standard is more present than ever; consider how you can seize that opportunity today.

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