Panasonic’s Roadmap to a Net Zero Carbon Future


At a press conference held at Mostra Convengno Expocomfort in Milan today, Panasonic Heating & Cooling Solutions unveiled the next phase of its long-term vision, emphasising sustainability initiatives and strategic collaborations. Titled "Paving the way to a Net Zero Carbon Future," high-level executives from Panasonic outlining the company’s strategic roadmap.


Yuki Kusumi, Panasonic Group CEO, explained the company’s visionary 250+ year plan, launched in 1932, which envisions "prosperity both in matter and mind" through ten 25-year phases. The current 4th phase is dedicated to "focusing on solving global environmental issues and offering customers health, safety, and comfort."


Kusumi outlined the urgent challenges hindering the corporate purpose and highlighted Panasonic’s steadfast commitment to long-term environmental initiatives through Panasonic GREEN IMPACT, which strives to create a carbon-free society, saying: “We must pass along this beautiful planet to our children & grandchildren, so they can continue to live in comfort. Therefore, we must suppress global warming by any means…we must minimise the use of limited natural resources, and establish a healthy circular economy, as soon as possible. To this end, we must steadily achieve the 1.5°C limit of the Paris Agreement, and, with all urgency, minimise the constant CO2 emissions. Therefore, Panasonic regards these goals as its top-priority management issues.”  He further added: “Especially in Europe, we believe that the electrification of heating devices, through the wider use of heat pumps, is all-important in transforming the energy supply and demand structure. Therefore, we regard this as an enormous challenge that we must meet going forward. We have been promoting the HVAC business in Europe as one of the Group’s core businesses. Through this business, we believe we can accelerate our initiatives toward the electrification of heating devices.”


Following this overview, Hiroshi Komatsubara, CEO of Heating & Ventilation A/C Company Business Division Europe, unveiled the European landscape for Panasonic's HVAC endeavours. He announced the latest innovations to Panasonic’s air-to-water Aquarea heat pump range with the revolutionary new Big Aquarea M Series units, ideal for multi-family residences and light commercial spaces. Offering unparalleled scalability, the new units boast capacities ranging 20, 25 and 30 kW, with the capability to scale up to a remarkable 300 kW in cascade configuration. These units leverage the sustainable R290 natural refrigerant, aligning seamlessly with Panasonic’s GREEN IMPACT, while harnessing Panasonic’s unique T-CAP technology.


He shed light on Panasonic’s strategic alliance with INNOVA, an Italian manufacturer renowned for its expertise in hydronics systems, air quality solutions, and air conditioning equipment, saying: We have known INNOVA for more than 10 years, and after a mutual procurement relationship for heat pumps and fan coil units, we decided to expand our cooperation in Europe. We decided to work with INNOVA to create a solution that would save energy, utilise the water circulation piping in the home, and integrate everything into a single control that could be updated.” The two companies will jointly develop next-generation integrated housing solutions with availability planned from 2025.


In another impactful announcement, Mr. Komatsubara unveiled Panasonic’s latest partnership with tado°, market-leading smart heating control and energy management services, explaining: “As we move forward with decarbonisation, we are promoting the replacement of boilers with heat pumps that are high energy-saving. What customers are looking for is not only equipment, but also convenient energy management.  In providing services that realise the highly efficient operation of air conditioning equipment such as heating through smart thermostats connected to the internet, tado° is a leading energy control solutions company in the industry. From connecting tado° smart thermostats to the indoor units, such as radiators, it is possible to remotely adjust the temperature and check the usage status, as well as perform highly efficient operation based on the weather and the user's usage pattern.” Together, these industry leaders aim to integrate state-of-the-art Aquarea heat pump technology with leading multi-room control and energy management services. This fusion not only advances the collective mission to decarbonise homes but also empowers customers to optimise energy usage and realise substantial cost savings.


Alfredo Meazza, Italy Country Manager, outlined opportunities in the Italian HVAC market, which has seen growing attention to energy efficiency and sustainability much like the rest of Europe. Alfredo explained, “At Panasonic, we are ready to chart the course for a net-zero emissions future thanks to our portfolio of products, suitable to meet the needs of comfort in all applications. The common denominator in our race to decarbonisation is improving energy efficiency and the use of ever lower GWP refrigerants such as the natural refrigerant R290.”


He also delved into Panasonic's strategy for managing its new solutions and collaborations. Specifically, he emphasised the company's efforts to bolster its pre-sales department by introducing new engineering roles and expanding its service structure. This expansion includes a broader range of after-sales and maintenance services.


Regarding training, Panasonic places significant importance on this aspect. He explained, “Our approach to training is to be present directly in the area: we will continue throughout 2024 with local activities aimed at professional distribution, the world of design and builders.” Additionally, the company aims to establish institutional points to ensure more targeted and qualified training for various stakeholders. Currently, Panasonic operates a Training Centre at its headquarters, and its development plan includes opening additional centres in Italy. The goal is to inaugurate the first of these centres by the first half of 2024.


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