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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

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Lower-GWP Refrigeration and Air-Conditioning Innovation Award

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Is the award restricted to projects in Developing Countries?
Yes, only projects that have been implemented in developing countries will be eligible for selection.
For this award, developing countries are defined in Article 5 of the Montreal Protocol. 
View a list of Article-5 countries

Do applicants need only to complete the submission form found on the website and briefly discuss the required project description or is this just an initial stage for shortlisting qualified participants and formal submission documents shall be provided later?
The completion of the form on the website is the formal submission. There is an opportunity to attach supporting documentation. Answering the questions in the form is most important – answering them fully but within the character limit.

What other documentation should I submit?
Besides completing the submission form, also submit relevant costing information such as a breakdown of costs, along with technical drawings, graphs and tables, photos (where available) that help describe the project and demonstrate its economic viability.  They can be uploaded with the submission form.

What languages can I submit documents and information in?
Only submit in English. If you have technical drawings or other documents you would like to submit, please ensure they have been translated into English.

Will there be an onsite inspection for the verification of the implemented innovative project?
There will not be a planned inspection visit; however, proof of operation might be requested if not included with the submission as attachments. And the judges might have questions.

Is there an application fee required for joining?
No fees will be requested at any point of the application, judging, or awarding process.

Who can apply?
Individuals or teams of individuals may apply. Individuals or teams can be associated with an institution, organization, or company, but awards will be made to the individuals themselves and the individuals must have been involved in the research, design or implementation of the technology used in the project.

If submission is by an individual, individuals must confirm the work was not a team effort and must provide confirmation by a person familiar with the work.

If a team of individuals is selected for an award, a maximum of 5 certificates will be issued and a maximum of 5 individuals will be cited for each selected project. For larger teams, applicant should specify the 5 names that will be cited.

What can be submitted: a project or a product?
A project or system can be submitted.  The intent of the award is not to highlight a product but to highlight successfully operating projects or systems.  No matter what the type of submission, the use low GWP refrigerants must be involved.  The higher GWP refrigerant replaced or avoided must be cited. That is the main criterion.

The intent of the award is also to recognize innovation; not the application of an already available technology applied for the first time in a new market. An exception is if the application in the new market has a unique dimension or approach.

Must the project or system already be working, and must it be working in a developing country(ies)?
The project or system must be implemented; it cannot only be a concept.  There must be evidence of the environmental impact achieved.  It should be working in an Article-5 country; however, if the case for application for use in an Article-5 country can be adequately presented, the project or system will be considered.

Will conversions of existing systems to lower GWP flammable refrigerants be considered?
Systems should be new designs operating with lower GWP refrigerants rather than conversions of existing systems.

Will support be provided by UNEP or by ASHRAE to individuals who wish to submit an entry?
Neither ASHRAE nor UNEP will support further development of the project or system nor will ASHRAE nor UNEP promote a commercial or proprietary product or system.  ASHRAE and UNEP through the award create awareness of the technical concepts presented.

Besides lower GWP refrigerant use is there any other technical requirement for submitting?
Use of lower GWP refrigerants is the main criterion and is the technical requirement. However, other submission requirements are:

  • Description of a new innovative technological concept.
  • Extent of need.
  • Description and goal of the design, practice, or project.
  • Environmental impact achieved including specific reference to the GWP chemicals’ contribution.
  • Description of further application in developing countries from both the technology and economic perspectives.
  • Energy efficiency goals for the project and energy performance.
  • Description of safety practices applied based upon the classification of the lower GWP refrigerant.

What will ASHRAE and UNEP do with selected entries?
ASHRAE and UNEP will make information about the selected entries available to promote the innovation’s application in Article 5 countries.  The intent of the award is to demonstrate how Article-5 countries are successfully making the transition to lower GWP refrigerants. 


 Steve Comstock
 OzonAction Partnerships, United Nations Environment Programme

 Mark Owen
 Director of Publications and Education, ASHRAE