Early August 2011, retailer Tesco opened its 97th store in China, yet the first one to feature a CO2 refrigeration system.
The 8,635 square meter supermarket includes a fresh area of 2,000 square meters and is located in the Cloud Nine Shopping Mall in the Minhang district of Shanghai.
The newly established store is the first in China to adopt a CO2 refrigeration system, significantly reducing the amount of fluorinated refrigerant charge used and greenhouse gas emissions associated with refrigerant leakage.
25% less energy use than standard store designs
The Shanghai store uses 25% less energy than standard store designs and is expected to reduce annual electricity consumption and carbon emissions by 1.18 million kilowatt hours and 1,176 tons respectively.
It has been built according to an advanced Energy Management System (EMS) that Tesco has rolled out to all stores in China after having trialled it in environmental stores. The store features:
Innovative use of CO2 as a refrigerant, plummeting the amount of HFC refrigerant charge from 1,500kg to 120kg, hence reducing the potential damage to the ozone layer and the atmosphere. Designed, installed as well as commissioned by Shanghai Fute Refrigeration & Electrical Engineering Co, Ltd, the system is a cascade CO2 / R404A one, encompassing a LT system capacity of about 60kW at -33 °C, and a MT system capacity of about 260kW at -9°C with a liquid circulating pump.
Heat recovery technology: the exhaust heat from the refrigeration system is recovered and reused to cater for the store’s hot water needs, thus saving the energy needed to heat the water.
Free Cooling: The use of low outdoor temperatures in winter and in transitional periods will save considerable amount of energy.
Temperature regulation: Sensors monitor the temperature and carbon dioxide concentrations to regulate temperatures and fresh air at comfortable levels for customers
More CO2 stores to come soon in China
Tesco plans to open a second store with CO2 refrigeration in Beijing later this year, while it expects the number of CO2 stores in 2012 to amount to at least four.
Early 2006, Tesco Group pledged to cut carbon emissions from it stores by 50% by 2020. Carbon dioxide refrigeration systems are an important means to achieving this target, as refrigerant emissions are currently responsible for about 16% of the retailer’s total carbon footprint globally. Indeed in the past year, thanks to a relentless focus on refrigerant emissions as well as further progress on energy efficiency, the retailer reduced its absolute CO2e emissions in the United Kingdom (UK) by 5%.
Subsequently, in November 2010, Tesco along with other members of the Consumer Goods Forum, pledged to begin phasing out HFC refrigerants from 2015, where this is permitted by local and national regulations, and feasible in regard to climate and store format.
As a result of these commitments, Tesco has more than 57 stores running on HFC-free refrigeration in the UK and a further 23 outside the UK (e.g. Czech Republic, Hungary). The retailer is also actively looking at non-HFC systems that could work in tropical climates like Malaysia and Thailand, as well as in smaller format and existing stores.
About Tesco China
Headquartered in the United Kingdom, Tesco is one of the world's top retailers that is rapidly expanding its presence in China. The total number of Tesco stores in China amount to 97, with 20 of them located in Shanghai.