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2007

September 29 - Daikin and Arkema Establish J. V. for New Refrigerants


Daikin Industries, Ltd. and Arkema Incorporated (Head office: Paris, France,) have agreed to establish a new company, Daikin Arkema Refrigerants Asia, Ltd. (hereafter "Refrigerants JV"), to market new refrigerants for air-conditioners in the Asian and Oceanian regions, excluding Japan, as well as a new company, Arkema Daikin Advanced Fluorochemicals (Changshu) Co., Ltd. (hereafter 125 JV), to manufacture and market HFC-125, the main component of new refrigerant gases, in November 2007.

HFC-125 is a fluorocarbon gas essential in generating new refrigerants. As a limited number of companies manufacture it, one issue that has arisen is securing a stable supply of HFC-125 after 2010, when demand is expected to dramatically increase.
Through establishment of the 125 JV, Daikin and Arkema seek to ensure a stable supply of HC-125 after 2010 as well as enhance cost competitiveness through a fusion of both companies' technologies. In addition, HFC-125 manufactured and marketed by the 125 JV will be mainly used in new air-conditioning refrigerants (R410A, R407C, R404A), which the Refrigerants JV plans to market throughout the Asian and Oceanian region. Daikin and Arkema also plan to market the new refrigerants on a global basis.

New refrigerants do not impact the ozone layer and are an alternative to HCFC refrigerants chiefly used to date. Manufacturers are expected to completely phase out HCFC refrigerants in the future. HCFC refrigerants have been banned in air-conditioners manufactured in Europe following regulations dated to 2004 and almost completely phased out in Japan as well. In addition, from 2010 HCFC refrigerants will be banned in air-conditioners manufactured in the United States.
Regions experiencing growth in AC demand, such as China, are also expected to make the switch to new refrigerants. Therefore, worldwide demand for new refrigerants is expected to increase dramatically.

September 27 - HVAC&R Industry's Role in Montreal Protocol Successes

As this month marks the 20th anniversary of the creation of the Montreal Protocol, the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) celebrates the efforts of the heating, ventilating, air conditioning and refrigeration (HVAC&R) industries that have played a role in reducing ozone depletion.
The Montreal Protocol on Ozone Layer Depleting Substances is an international treaty designed to protect the ozone layer by phasing out the production of a number of substances believed to be responsible for ozone depletion.
"ASHRAE has played a substantial role in stopping further ozone depletion by helping the industry to transition away from ozone-depleting refrigerants," Kent Peterson, ASHRAE president, said. "The Montreal Protocol has shown that when we do what is right for mankind, our initial burden can turn to benefit. Not only has the Montreal Protocol improved the ozone layer, but it also initiated vast technological improvements in air conditioning equipment."
ASHRAE has continuously developed ANSI/ASHRAE Standard 15-2004, Safety Standard for Refrigeration Systems, and ANSI/ASHRAE Standard 34-2007, Designation and Safety Classification of Refrigerants as new refrigerants that are better for the ozone have been developed. In particular, ASHRAE has traced the development of HCFCs to replace CFCs, and then HFCs to replace HCFCs as technology improved. Now, there is a movement to use "natural" refrigerants such as carbon dioxide, ammonia, and hydrocarbons such as propane and butane.

September 26 - Carrier Tops $3 Million in Donations to Habitat for Humanity

Company is First to Build 10 Homes with Hartford Area Habitat for Humanity

Carrier Corp., USA, has surpassed the $3 million mark in donations to Habitat for Humanity, and also became the first company in the Greater Hartford Area to reach the 10-home-build milestone with the Hartford Area Habitat for Humanity (HAHfH). Today, Carrier will raise the walls of a new four-bedroom home, at 101 Charlotte Street in Hartford, Connecticut.

With more than $3 million in both cash contributions and heating and air-conditioning equipment, as well as thousands of employee volunteer hours, Carrier is one of Habitat for Humanity's most generous sponsors. Carrier has built more than 100 homes around the world, including those in the United States, the Philippines and South Africa.

"Carrier is proud of its long-standing relationship with Habitat for Humanity," said Carrier President Geraud Darnis. "As part of our corporate commitment to social responsibility, we will continue to seek opportunities to improve the communities in which Carrier's employees and customers live and work."

The new home is Carrier's second "green" home, designed to meet ecologically sound building standards through the use of recycled materials, renewable resources and energy efficiency. An energy-saving Carrier Performance 90 gas-fired hot water boiler will be installed in the home, as well as nine other HAHfH homes.

The Carrier-sponsored home is one of the last being built in Hartford Area Habitat's "Swift Village" development, a group of 32 homes constructed in Northeast Hartford.

September 22 - New ECO CUTE Models in Japanese Market

"ECO CUTE" is the commercial name of CO2 heat pump water heaters sold in Japan mostly for domestic use.

Heat pump air conditioning systems are growing steadily in the air conditioning market. Mitsubishi Electronics, a leading supplier of ECO CUTE units for commercial use, has developed its "SunnypackQ Eco" unit with 40 kW power. First deliveries are expected for October 2007. The unit has a newly developed inverter scroll CO2 compressor. Achieving a Coefficient of Performance of 4.1, the unit also reduces CO2 emissions by 40% compared to conventional boilers.

Hitachi launches new series
According to a Japanese trade journal, Hitachi Appliance will commercialize a new range of Eco Cute products: two types of its Z-series with voice response and two types of its ZA-series which feature an additional automatic stopping of the hot water supply. Both series have 370 and 480 litres storage tanks.

Toshiba releases Hybrid Hot Water Systems
Toshiba will release two system types combining a heat pump hot water system and an electric hot water system. The new products feature a tank capacity of 460 and 560 litres, an automatic air release system and a pipe reverse checking system which is the same as Toshiba's ECO CUTE models.

September 19 - American Standard Agrees to Sell Bath and Kitchen Business

American Standard Companies Inc. recently announced that it has signed a definitive agreement to sell the company's worldwide Bath and Kitchen products business to funds advised by Bain Capital Partners, LLC, a leading global private investment firm, for $1.755 billion in cash.

Upon completion of the sale, Bain Capital will acquire all of American Standard's Bath and Kitchen business with 2006 annual sales of $2.4 billion, 26,000 employees and 54 production facilities in 23 countries worldwide. The business manufactures and markets industry-leading products under brand names such as American StandardR, Ideal StandardR, Armitage ShanksR, PorcherR, JadoR, Ceramica DolomiteR and VidimaR.

The sale closing is expected to occur early in the fourth quarter. The company intends to use proceeds of the sale primarily to repurchase common stock and reduce debt to keep the company at investment-grade standards. The sale is subject to normal regulatory approvals and customary closing conditions. Shareholder approval is not required. The buyer has secured firm financing commitments.

On Feb. 1, 2007, American Standard announced plans to separate its three businesses by selling Bath and Kitchen, spinning off Vehicle Control Systems and retaining its largest business, Air Conditioning Systems and Services. The current announcement is the final step needed for completion of those plans following the spinoff of Vehicle Control Systems as an independent publicly traded company to be known as WABCO, which is scheduled for July 31 at 11:59 p.m. EDT. In March, the company sold Venesta Washroom Systems, which was part of Bath and Kitchen. Combined with Venesta, proceeds for the sale of Bath and Kitchen total $1.92 billion.

September 19 - 'eneloop mobile booster': Charging Portable Electronic Devices

Sanyo Electric Co., Ltd. (SANYO), the world's largest manufacturer of rechargeable batteries, expanded the eneloop universe, a concept of recycling ('looping') energy, with the introduction of three new 'eneloop mobile boosters', portable reserve batteries that provide back-up power for USB-compatible mobile electronic devices, from mobile phones and portable game consoles to MP3 players.
One of the boosters uses two eneloop AA batteries, the award-winning and revolutionary
nickel-metal hydride rechargeable battery that proposes environmental and economical solutions to mobile energy. The other two boosters contain high-powered lithium-ion batteries capable of recharging the electronic device at a higher capacity. Once charged via the USB port or a power outlet, the nickel-metal hydride or lithium-ion batteries are the ideal emergency companions when running on empty while on the move. The eneloop mobile boosters will be on sale in Japan from December 2007.

SANYO will continue to expand its rechargeable battery product lineup based on its
brand vision 'Think GAIA', proposing global energy solutions and LOHAS lifestyle
solutions compatible with the natural environment and comfortable living.

September 15 - ARI, GAMA Continue to Evaluate Merger

The executive committees of ARI and GAMA recently decided that the two organizations continue the merger process. This was based on the input received from ARI and GAMA members who participated in July focus group meetings and who responded to an email survey about the potential merger.

Before a merger could occur, it would have to be approved by each executive committee, then each board, and finally by votes of the ARI and GAMA members.

The study group found that an ARI and GAMA merger would result in:

1. A single organization representing HVACR manufacturers:

- One voice, one message
- Stronger advocacy to address increasing regulatory and legislative initiatives (federal, state, and international)
- Stronger presence in more congressional districts

2. Better ability to attract, develop, and retain quality staff.

3. Natural synergies from combining the two associations that could be used to increase services to members in the areas of:

- Standards
- Certification
- Advocacy

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