Vietnam holds conference on energy saving and refrigerants for air conditioners

On July 1, 2020, the Department of Energy Conservation and Sustainable Development of the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MOIT) of Vietnam, in collaboration with Eco-Environmental Institute (EEI) and VNEEC, held a conference on the National Planning Project for Effective Management of Refrigerants (K-CEP). The project is being managed by the Department of Energy Conservation and Sustainable Development of MOIT and the Department of Climate Change of the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment with the support of World Bank (WB).

The purpose of this conference was to discuss the following three points

  • Phase 2 of the K-CEP
  • Current status and forecasts of energy efficiency, refrigerants and high efficiency technologies for air conditioning equipment
  • Targets for energy conservation and greenhouse gas reduction for household air conditioners

Phase 2 of the K-CEP

As a result of the first phase of K-CEP, energy labels have been implemented on 90% of household electrical appliances in Vietnam. The energy efficiency of air conditioners has been increased by 13% per year, and more efficient products are expected to be sold in the near future.

The goal of the National Energy Efficiency Program in 2019-2020 (VNEEP3) is to reduce domestic energy consumption by 5-7% by 2025, and by 8-10% by 2030. Experts at the Department of Energy Conservation and Sustainable Development said that if the plan is carried out as planned, the country would be able to reduce electricity consumption by 6,000 GWh/year by 2030, which is equivalent to VND 100 trillion and 34 million tons of carbon emissions.

In addition to the increase in energy demand, accidents caused by natural disasters and depletion of existing energy sources will be a major problem in the future. In order to solve them, the second phase of the K-CEP should include support for the transition to HFC-32 (R-32) and inverter air conditioning technology, and its application for domestic manufacturers.

The current state of the air conditioner market

The annual growth rate will reach 25% and this year’s sales volume will be 25 million units more than in 2019. Among them, wall type air conditioners will account for 89.6% of the total. Inverter air conditioners are also becoming more popular, accounting for 63% of the total sales. As to the refrigerant, nearly half of the 4,000 products surveyed are already using R-32 (HFC-32), with the others being R-410A (45%) and R-22 (6%), which has the advantage of having a low environmental impact but is still expensive.

According to experts, inverter air conditioners have an energy efficiency (CSPF) of around 4.77, while inverter air conditioners using R-32 refrigerant can achieve a CSPF of up to 5.36. Over the next five years, the sales volume of inverter air conditioners using R-32 is expected to increase from 88% today to 99% in 2027, and energy efficiency (CSPF) is expected to increase from the current average of 4.8 to 5.7-6.0.

Greenhouse gas emission reduction and energy conservation targets

VNEEC’s experts used the PAMS model to perform simulations on energy efficiency improvements in air conditioning units. The results showed that it would be expected to lead to reduce by 6.74% in electricity consumption (equivalent to 2.27 TWh) and 2.23 MT (megatons) of carbon by 2030.