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Energy & Water

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Laboratories consume five to ten times the energy of a comparably-sized office. Among the top-ranked energy-consuming devices are fume hoods, safety cabinets, and ultra-low-temperature (ULT) freezers. These may use as much energy as three households.


In addition, the water footprint of laboratories is not much better. Laboratories use five times more water than offices. Purified water and autoclaves contribute a lot to this high demand for water. However, little changes to more sustainable routines can make a huge difference and impact.

In the following posts, we list some actions to help you to tackle these issues and reduce energy and water footprint in your laboratory.


Jain, N. (2022)

Green Guides

Fume Hoods: How to save energy?

Fume hoods are among the top-ranked equipments when it comes to energy consumption.

Biological safety cabinets: How to save energy?

Biological safety cabinets consume about half as much as a house. Therefore, like fume hoods, they are at the top-ranked devices in your lab when it comes to energy consumption. 

Ultra-low temperature freezers: At which temperature?

After the fume hood and biological safety cabinet, this is probably the most energy-costly piece of equipment you use.

Ultra-low temperature freezers: How to save energy further?

Ultra-low temperature freezers: When to replace?

Despite energy costs increasing with equipment ageing, replace old equipment as a last resort only.

Storage at 4 and -20 °C: How to save energy?

Storage at these temperatures is far less energy-costly than at -80 or -70 °C. Still, you may save energy by following many of the same principles as for ULT freezers.

Autoclaves: How to save energy and water?

Autoclaves are commonly used to sterilise equipment, reagents, and hazardous waste in labs. They are a major source of water consumption in labs and medical facilities.

General Lab Equipment

A lab uses five to ten times more energy per square meter than an office space.* That is because of the multiplicity of electric equipment scientists need to use every day.

Water footprint: How to save water further?

Most laboratories use substantially more water per square meter than standard commercial buildings do. Fortunately, there are several ways to reduce your water footprint.

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