1. Avoid purchasing a new freezer if possible. Can you clean out space in your existing unit to accommodate new samples, or share freezer space with a neighboring lab? This is a great way to save your lab money, and minimize your environmental impact.
  2. If you need to buy a new freezer, look for an efficient model:
  • Look for energy consumption information on the product’s technical specifications, and talk to vendors about this topic. Many manufacturers are realizing that energy efficiency is an increasing area of concern for consumers, and are therefore making strides to ensure their products are as efficient as possible. 
  • Larger freezers typically use more energy than smaller freezers relative to their size.
  • Upright freezers typically use more energy than chest freezers of the same age & size.
  • Some highly efficient ultra-low temperature freezers utilize cutting edge technology that increases their cost. If your lab is interested in purchasing a highly efficient freezer, but you’re running into cost concerns, an Office for Sustainability student grant may be able to cover a portion of the cost differential in exchange for a case study. Contact sustainability@harvard.edu for more information.