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Environmentally harmful product dumping (“environmental dumping”) of new and used low-efficiency cooling appliances with obsolete ozone-depleting and greenhouse gas refrigerants in African countries impoverishes communities, hinders economic development, threatens ecological systems, and harms public health. The use of lowefficiency cooling appliances increases energy demand, leading to higher power plant emissions and limiting affordable energy access in African countries. These low-efficiency appliances and products contain ozone-depleting refrigerants with high global-warming potential (GWP) or ozone-safe refrigerants with high GWP. Environmental dumping of these appliances and products makes it more difficult for countries to meet their international climate obligations and for the world to meet the Paris Agreement’s climate change mitigation targets. Ghana faces high levels of environmental dumping, despite a national ban on importing used cooling appliances and established efficiency standards for new air conditioners and refrigerators. Through the Energy Commission’s Office of Renewable Energy, Energy Efficiency, & Climate Change (REEECC), the government of Ghana is partnering with the Institute for Governance & Sustainable Development (IGSD) to stop environmental dumping. This article provides a list of interventions that can be implemented by Ghana, by governments in countries that export to Ghana, and by industry and other stakeholders. Notably, these actions focus on the shared responsibility of exporting countries and manufacturers by calling on exporting countries to update and enhance enforcement of their laws, and on global manufacturers to stop exporting inefficient products with obsolete refrigerants to Ghana and other African countries.

In 2019, the Government of Morocco with industry and non-governmental partners organized the Morocco Banker’s Air Conditioner Buyers Club with an ambition to gain access at a competitive and affordable cost to room air conditioners (RACs) with high-efficiency and low global warming potential (GWP) refrigerants as mandated globally by the Montreal Protocol. In 2020 the Government of Morocco and the Morocco Banker’s AC Buyers Club have decided to replace older RACs with next-generation technology using more climate-friendly refrigerants. This report provides the indicative finding that the RAC replacement program planned by the Government of Morocco and partners will reduce power consumption by up to 70% with additional economic and climate benefits from the recovery and destruction in local cement kilns of obsolete HCFC and HFC GHG refrigerants.

This paper presents a pioneering benefit assessment framework and indicative quantification of the community and national benefits of operating cost savings from super-efficient room air conditioning (RAC) that are spent locally and not for imported fuel, electricity, and power plants. It also estimates the benefits of expanded employment to replace and service the new RACs and to recover and destroy obsolete and contaminated ozone-depleting and greenhouse gas (GHG) refrigerants. Shifting spending from foreign to local purchase improves balance of trade, strengthens domestic currency, and creates jobs and prosperity as funds circulate in the local economy. Added to that are the community benefits of mass replacement of RACs and their service to maintain energy efficiency over the life of the appliance. This community impact grows over time as savings accumulate on avoided fuel and energy infrastructure and as the income from the new jobs circulates in the local economy.

The demand for air conditioners that provide thermal comfort is steadily growing across the African continent as consumers seek to improve their quality of life in the face of urbanization and rising global temperatures. Since 2016, Africa’s market for new split room air conditioners has grown by approximately 5%, annually. As manufacturing and industrialized economies place increasingly stringent standards on room ACs sold domestically, while allowing continued export of technology that cannot legally be sold in the country of export as a consequence of failure to meet environmental, safety, energy efficiency, or other product standards, importing countries risk becoming dumping grounds for inefficient, environmentally harmful products using obsolete refrigerants. Weak or non-existent energy performance standards and the lack of proactive anti-environmental dumping policies in many African countries have facilitated environmentally harmful dumping of inefficient, high-global warming potential cooling products into African markets.

This report details the extent of the problem across ten countries in North, West, East, and Southern Africa, ultimately providing policymakers with a set of solutions to encourage a transition toward highly-efficient, sustainable cooling technologies.

This paper explains how Moroccan government authorities are cooperating with international organizations in finding the way forward with a combination of more stringent Minimum Energy Performance Standards (MEPS), private and public AC Buyers Clubs, and economic incentives such as import duties that favour efficiency and caps the global warming potential (GWP) of refrigerants used in imported room ACs. The Morocco AC Buyers Club will use comprehensive calculations of the carbon footprint and economic impact of room ACs tailored to local Moroccan climate and use conditions.