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Baseline Food Refrigeration Emissions in the UK, 2019-2020


This work benchmarks the existing UK cold chain and provides robust evidence-based data on emissions in 2020. Only emissions from refrigeration within UK borders was considered, both from refrigerant leakage and from electrical power usage. Energy consumption For energy consumption the Digest of UK Energy Statistics (DUKES) was widely used. This data is compiled by the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) and contains data for many years up until the current year. The United Kingdom Statistics Authority has designated these statistics as National Statistics, in accordance with the Statistics and Registration Service Act 2007 and therefore they were considered as the most accurate data available. DUKES data does not always differentiate the energy consumed by refrigeration systems in each of the cold chain sectors and therefore further analysis and assumptions were often required. Energy consumption values shown were collated per year for the years 2019/2020, unless otherwise stated. Emissions from refrigerant leakage The main GHG refrigerants are the fluorinated gases (f-gases); hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) and hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs). According to Brown et al (Brown et al., 2021) emissions of f-gases can occur at various stages of the refrigeration equipment life-cycle: During manufacturing, During installation, Over the operational lifetime, At disposal. The most comprehensive source of information for direct emissions is the UK Greenhouse Gas Inventory. This contains national greenhouse gas emission estimates for the period 1990-2019 and is the United Kingdoms National Inventory Report (NIR) submitted to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). It includes losses during manufacture/initial charging and at decommissioning as well as losses in use.


Foster, A, London South Bank University



Field Dates:

01/01/2019 - 31/12/2020

Data Date Range:

01/01/2019 - 31/12/2020

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