August 17, 2021

INTEGRA’s commitment to developing greener labs

Worldwide, it is estimated that labs produce a staggering 5.5 billion kg of plastic waste per year,1 and use about four times more water and 10 times more electricity than office spaces of the same size.2 Although vital discoveries are pioneered in these labs, which has certainly been highlighted during the COVID-19 pandemic, this output is unsustainable. INTEGRA Biosciences, a leading provider of high-quality laboratory tools, has created a list of key steps that you can take to help address this issue and reduce your overall resource consumption.

INTEGRA’s advice is largely summed up by the motto ‘reduce, reuse, recycle’, which addresses the sheer amount of waste generated each day in the lab. The company offers simple steps to help you reduce waste – like keeping an inventory to know when to order items in bulk – or collaborating with other labs to share equipment and reagents, helping to avoid over-ordering of chemicals that may expire. You might also be able to wash and reuse some conical tubes, reservoirs and plastic bottles, and simply knowing about local recycling programs enables you to set up corresponding bins to optimize waste disposal.

INTEGRA also provides important guidance on electricity and water consumption. Simple steps like switching off your devices and lights when they are not in use, using socket timers and closing the sash of the fume hood can all add up to a large overall reduction in your electricity usage. But it is the high energy drainers in the lab that are the bigger problem. Ultra-low temperature freezers consume an enormous amount of energy – about the same per year as an entire household3 – so you should use them as efficiently as possible, for example by raising the temperature slightly if samples are stable, or sharing one with another lab to maximize usage. And for water savings, equip your faucets with low-flow aerators, and only run dishwashers and autoclaves when full. These comprehensive guidelines, combined with choosing sustainable suppliers, will help you to not only reduce your environmental footprint, but also significantly increase efficiency and lower running costs.

Visit the INTEGRA Biosciences website to learn more.


1. Urbina, M., Watts, A. & Reardon, E. (2015). Labs should cut plastic waste too. Nature, 528 (479).

2. Kaye, C. (2020). Media Briefings 2020. #3 Efficiency & Sustainability: Igniting Innovation.

3. Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy (n.d.). Purchasing Energy-Efficient Laboratory-Grade Refrigerators and Freezers.


About INTEGRA Biosciences

INTEGRA Biosciences ( is a leading provider of high-quality laboratory tools and consumables for liquid handling and media preparation. The company is committed to creating innovative solutions which fulfil the needs of its customers in research, diagnostics and quality control within the life sciences markets and medical sector. Today, INTEGRA innovative laboratory products are widely used all around the world. More than 100 distribution partners form a worldwide sales network providing responsive and competent services to customers. These distribution partners are supported by a highly motivated and experienced team of specialists at the company headquarters in Zizers, Switzerland and Hudson, NH, USA. INTEGRA is an ISO 9001 certified company.


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