Mars uses refrigeration equipment for building air conditioning, factory production process cooling, and in point of sale units like ice cream freezers and vending machines. The majority of this cooling equipment currently utilizes synthetic refrigerant gases, especially hydrofluorocarbons which act as potent greenhouse gases if they escape into the atmosphere. Mars recognises that a rapid phase down of these high global warming potential (GWP) hydrofluorocarbon refrigerants (HFCs) and more sustainable management of refrigeration systems is necessary to meet the ambitious goal of holding the increase in the global average temperature to well below 2°C above pre-industrial levels, as set out in the Paris Climate Agreement (COP21).
As of the end of 2016, Mars had converted over one third of its total industrial refrigeration gas inventory to natural refrigerants. This transition has been driven by the improved energy efficiency and reduced environmental impact of natural refrigerants. With the launch of the Sustainable in a Generation Plan we aim to accelerate the progress we are making in this important environmental impact area. We also want to ensure we future proof our investments in industrial and point of sale refrigeration equipment. To support these ambitions Mars adopted this corporate refrigeration commitment in December 2017. It is based on the Consumer Goods Forum’s (CGF) Refrigeration Resolution which has been widely adopted by both manufacturers and retailers within the sector.
Mars commits to the following in all commercial and industrial refrigeration equipment under our control1 , within our value chain:
- To purchase new equipment that utilise only natural refrigerants or alternative ultra-low2 GWP refrigerants where viable3 ,
- To work to reduce the environmental impact of our existing and new refrigeration systems, including (but not limited to) improving energy efficiency, optimising refrigerant charge sizes, and minimising refrigerant leaks4 ;
- In countries where barriers to deployment exist, to engage with our suppliers, and other stakeholders via the CGF Refrigeration Working Group to overcome remaining technical, regulatory and other barriers to enable the purchase of new equipment that utilise only natural refrigerants, or alternative ultra-low GWP refrigerants as soon as possible and no later than 2025;
- To develop targets and action plans to achieve the above, and to measure and publish information on our progress.
1 Generally only refrigeration equipment that Mars directly purchases, but exceptionally could include equipment being bought by a third party to provide a service to Mars, where Mars is able to directly influence new equipment selection eg. Fit out of a new leased office.
2 GWP less than 150, in line with the European Union’s “F-Gas Regulation” (EU No 517/2014) on fluorinated gases.
3 Legally allowed, commercially viable and technically feasible with safe operation assured.
4 Whilst we do not commit to retire existing industrial or point of sale equipment that uses synthetic refrigerants before the end of its working life, we do commit that whenever viable, natural or low GWP refrigerants are utilized when existing equipment is replaced, and that all refrigeration equipment is operated in such a way as to minimize adverse environmental impacts.