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Carbon Literacy for Labs Impact Report

February 2019 by Emma Richards

Carbon Literacy for Labs Impact Report

At the tail end of 2018, The Carbon Literacy Project worked with The University of Manchester to design and deliver a Carbon Literacy course for people who work in scientific laboratories.

The City of Manchester is a hub of science and engineering; laboratories often contain energy-expensive equipment, heaters, machines and lighting. Several of the local universities in Manchester run large laboratories, and it was across a group of labs in The University of Manchester that the first Carbon Literacy for Labs course was instigated. A report has been produced looking into the impacts and outcomes of this initiative.

The Carbon Literacy Project worked with The University of Manchester to design a course that examined the day to day activities of lab users and helped participants, through group activities, games, film and learning exercises, to identify where they could cut carbon emissions. Every lab is different for example some work with heavy machinery, some work with harmful chemicals. It was up to the participants to figure out the changes they could make to create sustainable practice.

72 researchers and employees belonging to more than 25 different lab groups at The University of Manchester are now certified as Carbon Literate.

Each Carbon Literate lab user has created both a personal action (to immediately reduce the carbon footprint of their personal lab space/workplace) and a group action (to reduce the carbon footprint of their entire lab team). The training has therefore created at least 144 significant carbon reduction actions to date. It is believed that this will create substantial carbon and financial savings for The University.

After completing Carbon Literacy for Labs, 62% felt they would speak more about climate change and 91% of participants felt their confidence increase in identifying the carbon impact of their role in the lab.

If you would like to read more about Carbon Literacy for Labs and its impact on The University of Manchester, please read our full impact assessment.

Do you work in a lab? If your team would benefit from Carbon Literacy training, please get in touch.

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