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Developing a Green Labs Program Alicia Murchie Environmental Health & Safety Michael Ochs.

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Presentation on theme: "Developing a Green Labs Program Alicia Murchie Environmental Health & Safety Michael Ochs."— Presentation transcript:

1 Developing a Green Labs Program Alicia Murchie Environmental Health & Safety Michael Ochs

2 What is a Green Lab Program Program Development Collaboration and Partnerships Challenges Marketing & Promoting Outline

3 Why Green Labs? Labs for the 21 st century At Harvard, labs account for less than 25% of square footage and over half of energy use. Laboratories in the U.S. are energy-intensive facilities that use anywhere from 30 to 100 kilowatt-hours (kWh) of electricity and 75,000 to 800,000 Btu of natural gas per square foot annually.

4 Two aspects: Infrastructure and Occupant Engagement A Green Labs Program promotes integration of sustainability practices and resource conservation within lab activities. Stand alone lab program or part of a larger sustainability commitment? What is a Green Labs Program? Harvard’s Sustainability Commitments

5 Staff & Time Budget Development of existing programs? Part time employee to several Full-Time Primary or alternate assignments Position creation Possible Solutions: Time Management and Delegation Recruiting Help Student Workers Volunteers Self Assessments How much money do I need? Beginning with minimal budgets Staff, Office supplies, Marketing materials, Website Possible Solutions: Student Volunteers, Organizations, Staff volunteers Partnerships with internal depts. and outside vendors

6 Reduction in resources typically = reduction in costs Use existing case studies and resources for your specific project. Rely on hard data, but don’t forget the less measurable impacts: productivity, happiness… Start small, what can you do with your current resources? Measure results before, during and after Get feedback and maintain an open dialogue Making a Business Case

7 Who has a program?

8 Understanding your audience… Research, Research, Research! Time Crunch Lack of resources/infrastructure Varied Backgrounds High turn-over Limited and variable training Data-driven Oft- misunderstood

9 Establish credibility and foster trust Create rapport by demonstrating understanding and respect for researchers’ constraints and concerns. Use data to your advantage- do your homework! Collect feedback beforehand, listen carefully & address concerns. Track changes and continuously monitor results Understanding your audience, part II..

10 Make it easy to do the right thing Clearly define policies and expectations, integrate into trainings Provide ample support and infrastructure that requires little input from researchers. Allow flexibility; consider specific needs of different labs. Keep it simple, start with success Understanding your audience, part II..

11 Group Activity 1. If you were developing a green labs program on your campus what are the top three activities that you think would get the most participation from your lab personnel? 2. If you already have a program, what are the top three activities your campus does well regarding sustainability in labs?

12 Program Development I want to develop a program…now what? Scope of program Webinar Reach out to your peers (other universities) Survey the participants Examples of questions


14 Areas of most interest Convenient locations for recycling and programs in the labs. Printing on double sided paper.

15 Areas of least interest Occupancy sensors on room lighting. Replace mercury filled thermometers with alternatives.

16 You may find amusing results…

17 Do you use water for cooling, vacuum aspirators, or any continuous flow process?

18 Do you think there are opportunities for conserving water in your lab?

19 Make it easy for people to participate! What is probably the most important item to get people to participate in your program?

20 Who will develop and manage the program? Sustainability Office or another dept. What will the lab staff need to do? Certification criteria Use your survey results Self-assessment vs. Green Program Assessors Checklist and Application I want to develop a program…now what?

21 Can your Safety Department help? Who is the Safety Dept.? How does lab safety (i.e. chemical, biosafety, fire) contribute to the program? Design conservation efforts and maintain employee safety. Lab Registration

22 Lab Safety Registration

23 Internal External Collective Impacts Collaboration

24 Internally: Build Relationships!

25 Your biggest asset! Useful for interacting with labs Network of employees ◦ Know what’s going on, who is where and doing what Safety Trainings Inspections Safety Dept. Collaboration

26 Universities with programs Other Organizations (Green labs group on Google) Government (Labs21, DOE) Utilities (energy rebates) Vendors Leveraging our collective resources  Lab equipment wiki & energy data  Unified voice for big-picture goals External

27 Hazardous materials & processes Long, sometimes erratic operating hours Equipment is too specialized Researchers difficult to approach Labs don’t care about anything but research Lack of time Lack of awareness of consumption Labs not responsible for energy, trash, water Common Barriers (lab specific)

28 1. Identify barriers you’ve encountered or expect to in your lab program What has prevented you from working with labs up until this point? What barriers have you encountered or do you anticipate encountering? 2. Take a few minutes to write down your individual top 3, then we’ll get into groups. Group Exercise: ID Barriers

29 Get attention on your campus with lab staff? Orientations, Symposiums, Lab Meetings Training Post Doc Students (add to CV), Performance Metrics Food, shirts, lab coats Groups willing to help… Green Team, Committees, Internal Sustainablity Network, Compliance Officers, Student Clubs Marketing and Promotion

30 Branding


32 Materials Videos Website – simplified web url Newsletters and Events Business cards Marketing and Promotion

33 ◦ 110 members University websites ◦ Harvard ◦ Arizona State University ◦ UC Davis ◦ UC Santa Barbara ◦ Michigan ◦ Duke Labs21 website and conference S-Labs (UK) AASHE (Assoc. Advancement of Sustainablity in Higher Ed.) ASHRAE (American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air- Conditioning Engineers) Resources

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