Exemplary Efficiency in UC San Diego's Animal Care Program
Saving millions with the new Center for Automated Equipment Processing
CAEP, the state of the art Centralized Equipment Processing Facility now ending its first year of operations, was developed to make research equipment processing more efficient and sustainable. CAEP is located on the ground level of the UC San Diego’s new Centralized Research Services Facility, which was funded in part by a grant from the National Institutes of Health. The facility achieved LEED Gold certification despite having significant energy demands.
Stand Up for Sustainability
A letter from our Executive Director
Happy New Year from My Green Lab! We hope your 2017 is off to a great start. Following an incredibly busy 2016, we at My Green Lab are looking forward to an exciting year. We're overhauling our Green Lab Certification program, developing and advocating for new standards for lab equipment and consumables, and gearing up to educate thousands of scientists across North America on sustainable best practices in the lab.
My Green Lab’s mission – to build a culture of sustainability through science – is more relevant now than ever before. The last few years have seen general stagnation, if not reduction, in government support for scientific research. The next few may see more of the same, coupled with reduced focus on environmental stewardship. As we work together to navigate this uncertainty, it will be non-profits like My Green Lab that will be critical in preserving and ensuring resources for scientific research.
More than any other organization, My Green Lab will continue to be the loudest advocate for sustainability in science. Our standards will continue to drive greater focus on conservation, reducing operational costs, greenhouse gas emissions, and unnecessary use of water and toxic chemicals, all while inspiring the development of more efficient procedures and equipment. And it will be My Green Lab's outreach programs which ensure that the scientists of tomorrow are prepared to run environmentally, economically, and socially sustainable laboratories.
Collectively we are responsible for the future of research, our home, and each other. Working together, we can continue to make science a paragon for sustainability around the globe. Please take a moment to check out our latest campaign, and help us to spread the word!
Tell Us Your New Year's Lab Resolution!
We have all made a New Year's resolution in our personal lives, but have you considered making one change in your lab to make your research more sustainable? It can be as simple as shutting the sash on your fume hood, to starting a glove recycling program. Join us in our mission to create sustainable labs and share your resolution today!
Opening the Door to Energy Savings in Labs
The Emerging Technologies Coordinating Council and the Center for Energy Efficient Laboratories (CEEL) just released a comprehensive report on ultra-low temperature freezers. The project included both lab and field tests in order to understand ULT freezer energy and temperature performance. The results from this study were given to the EPA to further the ENERGY STAR effort for lab refrigeration. A huge thanks to all of those who helped us with this project!
The Rise of Sustainable Science
The last 25 years have brought incredible growth in both science and sustainability. As we move towards a circular economy, they have converged to produce advancements such as the 12 Principles of Green Chemistry and implementation of more environmentally-friendly lab practices. In this Green Chemistry ASAP article, Roger Sheldon elegantly reviews life-cycle assessment, waste minimization, catalysis, and solvent alternatives in the shift away from fossil-based resources in modern laboratories.
Be Good In The Hood
A single chemical fume hood can use as much energy as 3.5 average households! An energy reduction upwards of 40% can be achieved by simply lowering the sash height of a Variable Air Volume (VAV) fume hood. Fume hood sashes are also in place for researchers' safety, and shutting the sash helps protect you and your colleagues should something be volatile or explode in the hood. To raise awareness about safety and sustainability for fume hoods, My Green Lab has begun a 'Be Good in the Hood' campaign. The stickers below remind people to close their fume hoods. These stickers are clear (shown below on a cardboard box), and should be affixed to the fume hood sash. To purchase these stickers for your lab or institution, simply reply to this email.
A Simple Way To Make A Big Difference
Did you know water can flow out of laboratory faucets at over 6 gallons per minute (gpm)? This can be reduced to 1.5 gpm through the simple installation of an aerator. Pictured below, aerators screw on to the head of the faucet and produce a low-flow stream of air and water. Typically costing less than $2 each, installing an aerator on just one faucet can save thousands of gallons of water per year!
Connecting toxicology and chemistry to ensure safer chemical design
With the increasing demand for safer products, toxicology can be incorporated in the early stages of molecular design. Nicholas Anastas of the US Environmental Protection Agency wrote an intriguing perspective in the RSC journal, Green Chemistry.
Boston Green Ribbon Commission Green Labs Symposium
Our Executive Director, Allison Paradise, gave a fantastic talk on laboratory plug loads at the 2016 Green Labs Symposium at Harvard University! A video recording can be found here for those that were not able to attend, or would like to watch it again.