Memorial Church on the Harvard campus. Enex Technologies' Founder and Chairman recently spoke at Harvard Climate Action Week.
Harvard Memorial Church. Photo credit: 365 Focus Photography for Shutterstock.

Enex Technologies Founder and Chairman Talks Natural Refrigerants, F-Gas Threats at Harvard Climate Action Week

Greg Deldicque dove into the business case for natural refrigerants and the climate and health threats of f-gases.

During Harvard Climate Action week, held June 10–14, Enex Technologies’ Founder and Chairman, Greg Deldicque, spoke on an alumni panel about the climate and health threats posed by f-gases in the HVAC&R sector as well as the business case for natural refrigerants.

“Fluorinated gases have a GWP anywhere between 1,000 and 4,000, and they are also PFAS [per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances],” Deldicque said. “These long-term, long-life chemicals get rejected into the atmosphere, and when it rains it goes back into the water base, and bad things happen.”

“Just the global warming potential of the [HVAC&R equipment] leaks is equivalent to the global warming footprint of aviation in Europe and the U.S.,” he added.

Deldicque, a graduate of the Harvard Business School, said he “fell into the climate change space” because he saw a business opportunity.

“I am the ‘greed is good’ ’80s style of climate change,” Deldicque said. “My partners and I saw an opportunity in the [commercial] cooling, heating and refrigeration space to create a worldwide leader using natural refrigerants.”

The opportunity

The opportunity Deldicque is referring to is Enex Technologies, which was formed in 2020 after CCC Holdings Europe acquired Enex, an Italian CO2 refrigeration pioneer. Enex Technologies was formed, and, over the next four years, more European HVAC&R manufacturers were acquired, with the organization now counting nine brands.

“Heating, cooling and refrigeration in the developed world … it’s about 25% of the energy consumed,” Deldicque said. “So if you want to address climate change, you need to act in that space.”

He noted that the “migration” toward natural refrigerants has created a “big” business opportunity. “When you look at the industry, you’re talking $300 billion [€280 billion] worldwide and an industry growing historically, in terms of GDP Plus, at 3–5%, with naturals growing at 15% plus,” he stated.

Enex Technologies is helping fuel that growth rate. The company will launch 35 new products over the next 18 months, which Deldicque said will also support European regulators attempting to phase out inefficient and polluting heating and cooling technologies, such as fossil fuel-powered boilers.

“As we launch these new products that help energy efficiency and use natural refrigerants, this allows regulators to push regulation because you have the technology that makes [the regulations] palatable for customers,” Deldicque said. “Europe is at the forefront of technology and regulation for heating and cooling, and in the U.S. you see it coming. I see it coming and believe we’re going to get there.”

“Europe is at the forefront of technology and regulation for heating and cooling, and in the U.S. you see it coming. I see it coming and believe we’re going to get there.”

Greg Deldicque, Founder and Chairman at Enex Technologies

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