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Lab managers look to consulting services to assess and improve lab efficiency using instruments and systems that support tracking and monitoring key sustainability metrics.
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Global Sustainability Survey Reports Progress Toward Greener Labs

Laboratories seek to actively participate and accelerate sustainability efforts

Agilent Technologies
Published:Jun 14, 2023
|2 min read
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SANTA CLARA, CA — Agilent Technologies Inc., recently announced the results of an independent third-party global survey that will help the industry better understand analytical laboratories’ perceptions, aspirations, and challenges concerning implementing sustainability measures.

Conducted by the international market research firm, Frost & Sullivan, the survey sought to understand how lab managers globally are thinking about sustainability and reducing the environmental impact of their labs and how vendors can help by improving products and services to address their needs and current gaps.

The global survey and its findings

The survey took a two-phased approach with 100 qualitative phone interviews, followed by 500 online interviews with experienced lab personnel in Asia, Europe, the United Kingdom, and the United States across all the lab types and market segments Agilent serves. The primary functions of the labs surveyed were 

  • analytical services

  • methods development or validation

  • process control, monitoring, or manufacturing

  • quality assurance or control

  • research, and 

  • clinical testing.

The results indicated that about 82 percent of labs surveyed have already adopted sustainability measures. The top three actions that labs are currently undertaking to reduce their environmental footprint are

  1. Reducing carbon and other greenhouse gas emissions (72 percent) 

  2. Reducing or optimizing water and energy consumption (68 percent)

  3. Improving waste management techniques (60 percent)

Also, 85 percent of those surveyed expect their vendors to support them in reaching their sustainability goals, now and in the future, and 74 percent of labs stated that it would be an exclusion criterion for them to engage with a company commercially that did not have a commitment to net zero.

Demonstrating commitment to sustainability 

“A majority of labs stated that information shared by vendors, related to their own goals and objectives towards sustainability, in addition to instrument- and product-related information, was important,” said Neil Rees, head of Agilent’s ESG Programs. “Our ongoing partnership with My Green Lab (MGL) and their ACT Environmental Impact Factor Label program ensures that we can offer our customers third-party verified information on the environmental impact of Agilent solutions.”

“By providing the necessary verification and transparency of sustainability information, MGL ACT labels help consumers make informed decisions across the lifecycle impact of laboratory products,” said James Connelly, BA, CEO of My Green Lab. “Participating in ACT is a key way manufacturers demonstrate their commitment to our mission to build a global culture of sustainability in science.”

Exploring instrument end-of-life solutions

Additionally, 54 percent of labs would be interested in consulting services to assess and improve lab efficiency, followed by instruments and systems that support tracking and monitoring key metrics related to sustainability (44 percent). Labs are also looking to vendors to provide instrument end-of-life solutions, for example, recycling services (77 percent) and instrument refurbishment initiatives (51 percent).

“It’s important that we share these results with the wider community as we are all on the journey to be more sustainable,” said Victoria Wadsworth, BA, associate vice president of Reputation Marketing at Agilent. “By sharing these learnings, we can spark richer conversations and share best practices that bring everyone closer to their goals. It’s the right thing to do for business and our planet.”

- This press release was originally published on the Agilent Technologies, Inc. website