My Green Lab Certification
Penn State is piloting My Green Lab’s (MGL) Certification program to determine whether it should be the core upon which to base our University’s Sustainable Lab program. They are seen as the gold standard in this area, endorsed by the UN Race to Zero Campaign. About fifty percent of their clients are pharmaceutical and chemical companies, but they are interested in expanding their work with universities. Unlike some common sustainability checklists, MGL’s program emphasizes behavior changes and nurturing discussions among researchers about opportunities for improvements in the following fourteen categories:
Participating labs are supported with networking opportunities, connections to existing Penn State sustainability resources, and other educational materials supplied by the Leadership Team and MGL. Each participating research group is expected to appoint a lead coordinator (MGLC) to be the liaison between their members, the MGL manager, and the Leadership Team.
Throughout the initial six-to-eight-month process, which takes place during an academic year beginning in the fall semester, the participating labs attend a program orientation and complete the MGL survey of research practices for which the group will receive a detailed report, based on their submissions, of sustainability strengths and opportunities for improvements.
The second phase of the project is where the fun begins: identifying which changes the researchers want to implement over a six-month period, after which the members retake the assessment and receive a certification rating that is valid for two years. After two years, labs may choose to recertify. The process is illustrated below.
Because Penn State is still evaluating the suitability of the MGL program, all labs will be participating in focus groups each spring to learn from their experiences to fold into plans for the next year’s program. The program is seeking 25 labs to join the pilot’s second year.
The MGL program is well suited for research labs that conduct their research using cold storage, fume hoods, chemicals, and consumables. Any labs interested in joining for a year of guided discovery, please complete this interest form.
For more information, contact firstname.lastname@example.org