Oslobygg (Oslo Municipality's Property Administrator) has created a new guide for heat pumps - Natural refrigerants are now a requirement for all heat pumps and comfort cooling systems in the capital's municipal buildings
Previously, the requirement was for refrigerants to have a GWP (Global Warming Potential) value below 10. However, the City of Oslo now believes that the technology is mature enough to fully tighten the guidelines.
The following article is a recapitulation from The Norwegian Heat Pump Association (NOVAP), translated to English by Tequs. The original article can be read here
Natural refrigerants are now a requirement for all heat pumps and comfort cooling systems in the capital's municipal buildings. Previously, the requirement was for refrigerants to have a GWP (Global Warming Potential) value below 10.
This often resulted in synthetic refrigerants being used, even when the intention of the building owner was to consider the choice of refrigerants alongside other factors in the preliminary project phases.
"Synthetic refrigerants pose major environmental challenges, and there is a risk associated with future supplies. There has been tremendous development in the market for natural refrigerants. When we realized that the market was mature, we tightened our requirements," says Grande.
Wishing to Elevate Quality
The new guidelines describe how Oslobygg should acquire and operate heat pumps and cooling machines.
"We face many different challenges. Sometimes we don't set the right requirements, and sometimes the heat pumps and heating or cooling systems are not well-matched. With these guidelines, we hope to focus on heat pump deliveries to improve the quality of the systems and their performance over the year," says Grande.
Final Inspection Before Operation
With natural refrigerants, it's important to emphasize safety. This should be considered in all phases, including in the sketching stage. Risk assessments must be conducted in the preliminary phase, and Oslobygg requires that consultants can document the necessary competence. The guidelines also cover what should be included in the requirements specification, and they require a final inspection before the heat pump is put into operation.
The guidelines are written for both Oslobygg’s own employees in property management and project development, as well as for external stakeholders such as designers and other consultants.
Simple and Robust is Best in the Long Run
Grande believes that many clients take it for granted that they will receive a good solution, while some consulting engineers lack sufficient expertise on heat pumps and natural refrigerants.
"We also see that intentions are so good that people overcomplicate systems instead of delivering something that is good and robust. I prefer simple, robust systems, because they are simply better in the long run. This also holds true three years from now when someone has to repair or improve the system," emphasizes Grande.
You can find Oslo Bygg's guidelines for heat pumps and chillers here: https://skok.no/veiledere