20:49 PM

Lab Challenge


Mohawk College has joined the 2024 Freezer Challenge. The competition organized by My Green Lab® and the International Institute for Sustainable Laboratories (I2SL), challenges thousands of labs from across the world to implement cold storage best practices. The Freezer Challenge promotes energy efficiency for improved sample storage methods and reduced energy costs. The competition encourages sustainable actions that benefit ongoing research and the planet.

The focus areas of the challenge include:

1)      Good management practices

2)      Temperature tuning

3)      Unit retirements, upgrades and unplugging

4)      Cutting edge practices

5)      Completing freezer and sample inventories

Laboratory fridges and freezers are essential for student learning at Mohawk College. Through the Freezer Lab Challenge, the Chemical, Environmental and Biotechnology Labs are committed to meeting high sustainability standards. The labs have reduced freezer temperatures from -80⁰C to -70⁰C. This 10-degree difference will add up to significant energy savings over time. Additionally, ongoing maintenance of fridges and freezers, including removing ice build-up, temperature tuning and regular inventory checks are key actions that will help to reduce energy consumption.

Meeting these standards is not only beneficial for the college, but also ensures product safety and reliability for our industry partners. The Freezer Challenge is a global community which shares cutting-edge practices. If another lab has discovered a new practice, it can be shared through the Freezer Challenge community and implemented right here at Mohawk. Since 2017, the challenge has saved 44.7 million kWh of energy worldwide.

Students have the opportunity learn about these green practices during their time at the college. This knowledge creates a culture of sustainability on campus, encouraging students to consider energy savings practices they can implement both at home and school. The Freezer Challenge has inspired staff to think about other actions they can take, including energy savings for equipment like ovens and incubators. This ripple effect will allow for even greater energy savings going forward.  

The Freezer Challenge is an annual competition that runs from January 1 to July 1.

To learn more about Mohawk College’s climate action commitments visit the Climate Action Plan website.