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Coalition of the chilling to combat climate change

Launched at the First Global Conference on Synergies between the 2030 Agenda and Paris Agreement recently held in Copenhagen, the Cool Coalition is a global effort led by major government and private organisations to promote clean and efficient cooling methods.

Included in the Cool Coalition are the UN Environment initiative, the Climate and Clean Air Coalition, the Kigali Cooling Efficiency Program, and Sustainable Energy for All (SEforALL).

In total, more than 20 partners have committed to the new global initiative, which aims to inspire ambition and accelerate the move to clean and efficient cooling. The ultimate goals are to combat climate change, help achieve sustainable development and save money.

“Demand for cooling is growing, as it must if we are to provide equitable access to a technology that keeps our children healthy, vaccines stable, food nutritious and economies productive,” says acting executive director of UN Environment Joyce Msuya.

“But we also can’t allow emissions to get out of hand. The Cool Coalition offers a three-in-one opportunity to cut global warming, improve the lives of hundreds of millions of people and make huge financial savings.”

Fact: 2018 was the fourth-warmest year on record, with unprecedented peak temperatures recorded across the planet, from 43°C in Baku, Azerbaijan, to the low 30s across Scandinavia.

“In a warming world, cooling is a necessity, not a luxury,” says Sustainable Energy for All CEO Rachel Kyte. “We need to provide it to the vulnerable populations who currently have no electricity.

“This necessity is something that can be delivered within a 1.5°C pathway. We need to provide sustainable cooling at speed and scale so that we can ensure everyone has safe food, safe vaccines, and comfort at work. Hundreds of millions of people at risk today from extreme heat need protection and we must protect them in a way that also protects the planet from increased carbon emissions.”

The Cool Coalition is pushing a two-pronged approach of phasing down HFCs, along with focusing on improvements in energy efficiency.

Included in the coalition are the heads of major HVAC manufacturers, ministers from countries as diverse as Chile and Rwanda, as well as the leaders of civil society, research, academia and intergovernmental institutions.

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