Green Labs

Top of QNC Building with blue sky and tree


The Green Labs program was piloted in 2021 and launched in 2022 as a way for students, staff and faculty to build more sustainable lab practices across campus. As large consumers of energy and materials, labs have an critical role to play in meeting our climate and sustainability goals. Luckily, best practices for lab sustainability are often aligned with lab safety, and there are many ways to improve sustainability without comprising research integrity.

No matter your role in the lab, there is a place for you in the Green Labs program. Some of the benefits include:

  • Building relationships across campus
  • Learning new skills
  • Making a positive impact on campus sustainability
  • Achieving certification for your lab
  • Having fun!

The Green Labs 101 (PDF) provides a high-level summary of the program. Continue reading to learn more about the program structure, participating and certified departments, and some program highlights to date.

How it works

The Green Labs program is grassroots-driven. It supports ambassadors from each participating labs to improve sustainability in their lab spaces and build a culture of sustainability within their teams. Ambassadors can access the following tools to help make these changes:

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Ambassador network

A discussion board with a growing network of like-minded employees and students from across campus who are also supporting efforts in their own areas

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Resource toolkit

A set of templates, best practice guides, and communication materials

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A common scorecard to help identify new project opportunities and receive a Bronze, Silver, Gold, or Platinum designation for your office

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Support structures

Ongoing check-ins, trainings, challenges and resources led by the Sustainability Office to tackle action items

Resources for labs

The Sustainability Office is excited to offer some new incentives and resources to participating labs, including:

  • Power bars and/or outlet timers for lab equipment 
  • Faucet aerators for taps
  • Power meters to measure equipment energy usage
  • Access to PPE recycling* (if eligible)
  • Annual challenges to engage lab members
  • Access to an international network of lab sustainability leaders and best practices, through the International Institute for Sustainable Labs (I2SL) and My Green Labs

The Green Programs Coordinator is also available to offer project management and implementation support.

Certified departments

As of November 2023:

The following departments are participating in the Green Labs program and have received certification under the Platinum, Gold, Silver, or Bronze designation. You can explore individual scorecard submissions in the chart below by using the Lab and Year filters.

Green Labs gold certified
  • Ecology Lab
  • Quantum-Nano Fabrication and Characterization Facility (QNFCF)
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