The Centre has received a Gold LEAF award for lab sustainability. Developed by Sustainable UCL, the LEAF program contains actions for lab users to lower water and energy use and reduce plastic waste. Labs are audited annually and awarded Bronze, Silver or Gold depending on how many sustainability criteria they meet. Members of the Green Neuro Team accepted the award on behalf of the Centre at the KCL Sustainability Awards in July.
Laboratories have energy and waste footprints three to ten times greater than the equivalent sized non-research space. Engaging with researchers and technical staff in the lab is therefore integral to the university for both achieving its carbon reduction targets and in using resources more efficiently.
This year, sustainability initiatives included introducing lab recycling, adjusting autoclave schedules, surveying travel habits, participating in the 2-for-1 freezer swap and consolidating liquid nitrogen storage. The Green Neuro Team also hosted the first internal seminar on sustainability, highlighting actions all Centre members can take; such as closing the fume hood sash, shutting down equipment and reducing single use plastics. These are all simple actions but collectively they help ensure we reduce our environmental impact as much as possible without comprising the quality of our research.