President’s Message by Dave Rule

The second half of the year is always a challenging and busy time for the International Institute of Ammonia Refrigeration, and so far, 2013 has followed that precedent. As we wrap up this year’s work on behalf of the industry, the IIAR leadership is pleased to report on several successful initiatives in many different areas. I am also excited to announce a record level of interest in our Heavy Equipment show, which will take place in Nashville, in March of next year.

The Heavy Equipment Show, which takes place every three years, has always been an event that allows the industry to highlight cutting edge technologies, and the 2014 event is no exception. Sales for the heavy equipment show, as well as the convention, are far ahead of schedule when compared to previous years. That growth is due to the increasing number of industry professionals who have come to regard the conference and show as invaluable learning and networking experiences.

The 2014 conference is slated to be one of the best yet, living up to the reputation of previous conferences with an in-depth display of technical knowledge in Nashville. Eight technical papers will make up the technical education program this year. The emphasis on innovation will also be found on the equipment show exhibition floor. In combination with the stellar technical track, the two events will give our members a great foundation for the year ahead.

Meanwhile, our industry understands that innovation is at the heart of sustained growth for the future. As technology changes, the perception of ammonia refrigeration in the marketplace is changing for the better. Low-charge systems could lead to new markets, especially on the commercial side, for our members. And innovation will also change how we view standards and codes. In fact, it’s more important than ever to make sure the new codes and standards that are being formed now will foster the future innovation and growth of the industry.

That’s a topic that is sure to get some attention at the upcoming conference, but attendees will also see an emphasis on IIAR’s Process Safety Management Program (PSM) and Risk Management Program (RMP). Compliance and safety are always important subjects, so we’ve devoted the Sunday before the conference to a full day of events meant to train and educate our members on the latest ideas and trends in both areas.

The first half of the Sunday program will feature an Ammonia Safety Training Day, sponsored by the Ammonia Safety Training Institute. It will focus on ASTI’s 30 Minute Plan, meant to give facilities and first responders a solid plan for action during the most critical phase of an incident –the first 30 minutes. This event is free for attendees.

The second part of the day is a paid event that will focus on PSM and RMP, specifically, what to do when OSHA and EPA come knocking. We’ll have subject-matter experts and examples of real-world situations that can help you prepare for an audit. From the basics of PSM, RMP, to a discussion of issues that can only be gained through experience, this program will extend your preparation beyond what’s covered in IIAR manuals.

Events such as the ASTI Day and the PSM, RMP special session, are a main reason why the high number of sponsorship opportunities and exhibit booth space commitments for IIAR’s Nashville conference have been filled well ahead of prior years. But the strong interest in IIAR membership also highlights the growing importance of our industry from an environmental perspective.

As global attitudes about issues such as climate change evolve, our industry has a chance to expand its presence in other nations. World leaders are realizing that ammonia is a viable solution in the elimination of ozone-depleting hydrofluorocarbons in their countries. And as our industry develops technologies that are affordable, practical and scalable, we are well-positioned to support the increased demand for new systems that is already occurring around the world.

The strength of IIAR lies in the collective spirit of its members, staff and partners. I want to thank all of you for your support in making 2013 such a successful year for the organization. I look forward to your continued support in 2014.