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AREA to work on skills in low GWP refrigerants through REAL Alternatives project

Pan-European project to address low-GWP landscape of the future

European contractors’ association AREA is getting behind the pan-European learning programme REAL Alternatives which has been launched to address skills shortages amongst technicians working in the refrigeration, air conditioning and heat pump sector.
The focus will be on carbon dioxide, ammonia, hydrocarbons and HFO refrigerants. It will improve knowledge in the service and maintenance of these refrigerants in new systems from the point of view of safety, efficiency, reliability and containment.
Delivered through innovative ‘blended learning’ - a mix of e-learning, face-to-face training materials, practical exercises, assessments and online learning resources - the programme will bring together industry knowledge and expertise from across Europe. REAL Alternatives will also build on the established REAL Skills Europe & REAL Zero containment approaches.
This two year project will be led by a consortium of seven partners from across Europe and is co-funded by the EU Lifelong Learning Programme. The consortium includes training and professional institutes as well as employer representative bodies. All partners in the REAL Alternatives consortium will contribute to each aspect of the programme with the following key areas of responsibility:

  • Clarifying alternative refrigerant training needs and opportunities in Europe - London South Bank University, UK
  • Developing a specification for the e-learning and reviewing resources currently available in Europe to support learning, London South Bank University, UK
  • Developing e-learning process, integrating practical learning materials, resources and translation, Limburg Catholic University College (KHLim), Belgium
  • Piloting and testing of materials with live audiences in five languages (English, Italian, German, Polish and Flemish) Associazione Tecnici del Freddo (ATF), Italy
  • Monitoring the impact of the project and evaluating success, IKKE training centre Duisburg, Germany
  • Stakeholder engagement, AREA & Institute of Refrigeration, UK
  • Project Management, Institute of Refrigeration, UK
  • Identifying opportunities for long term sustainability of outputs, PROZON recycling programme, Poland.
  • A programme website will shortly be launched at www.realalternatives.eu, where interested parties will be able to find out more about the programme, volunteer shared resources or register for updates.

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