Initiatives and Announcements from Across the Industry

Rheem Announces New Sustainability Initiative

Last month, during the AHR Exposition held in Atlanta, GA, Rheem President and CEO Chris Peel announced the company’s commitment to achieving zero waste in its manufacturing processes.

Rheem President and CEO Chris Peel

Chris Peel

Peel told a group of show attendees that this new Global Sustainability Initiative was called ‘A Greater Degree of Good.’ ‘The intent is to cut Rheem’s greenhouse footprint by 50% by 2025,’ he explained.

This means the company is focusing on attaining zero waste and zero landfill impact.

‘In addition,’ Peel said, ‘ we have the goal of training 250,000 plumbing and HVAC contractors on sustainability best practices.

Besides making its manufacturing processes and locations more sustainable, Rheem is focused on developing products to help consumers be more energy efficient and reduce their own environmental impact.

Peel explained that the company’s vision had a three-tier approach:

  • Degree of Innovation
  • Degree of Efficiency
  • Degree of Leadership.

The Innovation approach focuses on developing and marketing products that minimize waste when in use. Peel says this is combined with the goal of reducing their own greenhouse gas footprint and in alignment with the company’s 100th anniversary.

The Efficiency approach really focuses on the company’s processes — new efforts to implement environmental processes. ‘Along with the company’s independent efforts to ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns, Rheem is committed to affecting an even greater environmental impact and is calling on other companies to adopt environmentally sound practices and prioritize sustainability in their manufacturing as well,’ Peel said.

Regarding Leadership, Peel says the company is taking a stand in the battle to overcome the technician shortage in the HVAC and plumbing trades. ‘Recognizing that our success depends on skilled plumbers and contractors who install and service our products, Rheem is investing in new recruiting and training initiatives.

‘We are working to foster a qualified workforce and educate the trade on how to best support Rheem’s sustainability goals. By 2025, Rheem will commit to training at least 250,000 plumbers and contractors on sustainable products, sustainable installation, and recycling best practices using our six state-of-the-art Innovation Learning Centers located across North America.

‘We all feel a shared responsibility to reduce the natural resources required to make and use our products, and we are excited about the opportunity to affect positive environmental change through these purposeful actions. By working together – Rheem associates, our contractors, and consumers ‘ we will create a Greater Degree of Good,’ Peel concluded.

Danfoss Sees Residential Market Slowdown

Danfoss North America President John Galyen took a look back at the economy from an HVAC Industry perspective during a press conference at last month’s AHR Expo in Atlanta, GA.

John Galyen, President, Danfoss North America

John Galyen

He told attendees that 2018 was a year of solid growth in the HVACR industry, but said that would change in 2019, mostly as a result of the tariff war between the U.S., some of its allies, and China. He added that those tariffs and other economic events were creating uncertainty that would impact the markets.

‘All indicators point to positive growth early in 2019,’ he says, ‘but we see a slowdown coming in the second half.’

Galyen qualified his statement saying that the slowdown would mostly impact the residential arena — commercial HVAC would continue to grow. He attributed that growth to a new form of commercial customer collaboration with regard to refrigerants and sustained efficiency.

Furthermore, because of the current administration which has effectively stripped the EPA’s powers, refrigerant development is in danger of falling under a patchwork of regulations from individual states and cities, Galyen pointed out.

‘That puts a huge burden on HVAC contractors who still service legacy systems,’ he says.

Taco Presents 2019 Dan Holohan Award

Dan Foley, owner of Foley Mechanical, Lorton, VA

Dan Foley

On Monday, January 21st, the first day of the AHR Expo in Atlanta, GA, Contractor Dan Foley, owner of Foley Mechanical Inc. in Lorton, Virginia, was presented the Dan Holohan Lifetime Contribution to Comfort Award during the Taco Comfort Solutions?’ press conference. The award was presented by John Hazen White, Jr., executive chairman and CEO of Taco, Inc.

The annual award is given to an HVAC professional or company that makes substantial contributions to comfort technology, advancement, or training while displaying the exceptional good humor and love of people exhibited by Dan Holohan throughout his long career.

Foley is the fourth recipient of this award and, according to John Hazen White, Jr., ‘is recognized for his uncompromising commitment to the quality, comfort, efficiency, and capability provided by hydronic systems.”

Foley Mechanical was founded in 2002 in Washington D.C.

Rees Foundation Awards $65,000 to Aspiring HVACR Technicians

The Clifford H. ‘Ted? Rees, Jr. Scholarship Foundation, a 501(c)(3) charitable foundation of the Air-Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute (AHRI), and the Air Conditioning Contractors of America (ACCA), announced scholarship awards totaling $65,000 to 39 students, including five military veteran program recipients, studying to become technicians in the HVACR and water heating industry.

AHRI President and CEO Steve Yurick says the foundation is geared to providing aid to people interested in careers in the HVAC Industry.

‘Each year, the Foundation provides aid to an increasing number of recipients, helping to promote careers in the industry and fill good-paying jobs that cannot be outsourced,’ he says.

Since the Rees Scholarship Foundation was founded in 2003, it has awarded more than $800,000 in scholarships to more than 400 deserving students and instructors.

The scholarship foundation has several programs that include:

HVACR and Water Heating Program ‘ This supports students enrolled in an HVACR training program at an institutionally accredited school and pursuing a career in the HVACR and water heating industry.

Veterans Program – To support veterans enrolled in an HVACR training program at an institutionally accredited school and pursuing a second career in the HVACR and water heating industry.

‘Developing quality workers is a critical initiative that everyone in our industry is working together to accomplish,’ says ACCA Interim President and CEO Barton James.

‘We are proud to partner with the Rees Scholarship Foundation and AHRI to give these hard-working students and veterans scholarships to help them continue their education, which will develop into a strong workforce for our industry’s future.’

For more information, visit the Reese Foundation website at