Many laboratories want to make their operation more environmentally friendly and reduce their carbon footprint.
The 5 steps below are a good starting point for simple changes to get closer to being a green lab
We’ve been reading the great tips and ideas on mygreenlab.org to reduce the carbon footprint of your lab. Why not try these simple changes to get you started?
1. Use closed loop cooling
Continuous water running for cooling condenser columns or other processes can really increase your water consumption. Why not switch to a closed loop system that recirculates and chills the same liquid – these will reduce your water usage and can also offer finer control over cooling.
2. Replace aspirators with vacuum pumps
Aspirators, also known as water jet vacuum pumps attach to laboratory taps for low vacuum applications like filtrations. Using an aspirator can consume a large volume of water – switching to an electrical vacuum pump will avoid this.
3. Recycle used items like gloves or plastics
Clean plastic products like sample bottles can be recycled easily, but did you know you can also recycle gloves? Find out more about the glove recycling program from Kimberly Clark here.
Make sure your chemicals are properly disposed of too – used solvents, COD vials and any other reagents should be collected by type for proper disposal. Contact us to talk about handling your lab chemical waste responsibly.
4. Use low carbon items where possible
Look at your purchasing options and choose low carbon products when they are available. For example these recycled storage boxes and racks use 50% recycled material.
It’s not just the material, but the manufacture too – did you know 99% of the Camlab plastics range are manufactured in the UK? This local production means a huge carbon saving as goods don’t need to be transported around the world.
5. Contain vapours with an absorbent ductless fume hood (and keep the sash down!)
A ductless fume hood with the right filter for the chemicals you are using will absorb potentially harmful vapours that would otherwise be released into the atmosphere. This is a much greener option than ducted fume hoods which simply flush the vapours out into the atmosphere.
Remember to keep the sash down to save energy too!
Camlab are ISO 14001 certified and are always looking for new ways to operate in an environmentally friendly way – from our recent solar panels installation to reducing our paper use by sending more documents by email.
Tell us your top tips to make the lab greener and reduce your carbon footprint – we’ll even send out some Camlab goodies for our favourite tips!