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Optimizing Lab Operations for a Greener Future

Views: 0     Author: Site Editor     Publish Time: 2022-06-01      Origin: Site

Manufacturing facilities and laboratories usually require high energy consumption which results in increased carbon emissions. Based on studies, pharmaceutical companies produce 55% more carbon footprint than the automotive industry, and the healthcare sector alone comprises 4.4% of the greenhouse gas emissions worldwide.

Laboratories produce tons of waste yearly. A scientist alone can generate around 1 ton of plastic waste in a year. Common examples of waste from laboratories are gloves, pipette tips, glass bottles, and cardboard boxes, many of which do not go directly to landfills or incinerators. Although recycling can help in waste management, it does not lengthen product life and is not an option for most medical wastes. Adding to the plight is the excessive energy consumption of plug-load equipment such as freezers, incubators, and computers. These units are deemed necessary and cannot be substituted.

To address this pressing concern, scientists and researchers across the globe have taken initiative in their academic institutions or biopharma organizations to arrive at sustainable approaches in research. Green lab efforts continue to increase as researchers work towards reducing energy consumption, water use, and waste production. Below are various practices that researchers can take into account to reduce the collective carbon footprint in laboratories.

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It is never too late to take part in this green revolution. As laboratory personnel, scientists, and researchers continuously strive to discover scientific breakthroughs for the advancement of society, one should also remember that it is possible to do so while protecting the environment and the planet that we live on . After all, we only have one Earth.


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