"Clean and Cool" summit
hosted by IMechE
Cold is the Achilles heel of the world’s developing economies, where substantial amounts of harvested food such as fruit, vegetables, fish, meat and dairy go to waste because there is no suitable cold storage or refrigerated transport. The absence of this ‘cold chain’ contributes to the loss of up to 50% of fruit and vegetables after harvesting in India and sub-Saharan Africa. This not only holds back development and worsens poverty and hunger, but also represents an unnecessary waste of often scarce resources of energy and water that could be used for other human endeavours.
At the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Head of Energy and Environment, Dr Tim Fox led a year-long study to investigate the challenge of the cold chain in developing countries, with particular focus on sub-Saharan Africa, India and China. The research programme included workshop events in India, Tanzania, the UK and USA to engage with development professionals, engineers, in-country farmers, NGOs, donor country officials, and key infrastructure players.
The study explored a large range of individual solutions that make use of the often abundant renewable energy resources in these regions and concluded that, from a holistic systems perspective, the use of cryogens such as liquid air and liquid nitrogen as an energy vector provide a robust route to a sustainable answer
A tank of cold: cleantech leapfrog to a more food secure world shows how these cryogens are uniquely placed to harness renewable energy for both power and cooling for use on demand in whole end-to-end cold chain applications, as well as how they can be practically implemented in the context of countries at different stages of economic development.
The cold economy: A liquid air solution for the developing world The Summit discussion around the Cold Economy saw contributors from the USA, UK, Netherlands, Belgium, Italy, Tanzania, India, Malaysia and Australia explore the potential of liquid air to improve food security and boost economic growth on a country-wide, integrated scale. For a comprehensive overview of the joined-up model that could connect liquid air transport, refrigeration, and grid applications by making use of waste cold in particular.
Exploring the Potential for Cold Chain Development in Emerging and Rapidly Industrialising Economies through Liquid Air Refrigeration Technologies Dr Lisa Kitinoja, Founder of the Postharvest Education Institute spoke out in favour of a sustainable, affordable cold chain at the Summit: “The ultimate potential of the uses of liquid air technologies can be limited only by our collective imagination.” Her ancillary report features in-depth analyses of potential liquid air applications in Tanzania and India. Among the findings is the conclusion that halving postharvest food loss would provide India with almost 18 million tonnes of additional food worth almost $4 billion.
"Clean and Cool" summit Presentations.