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Sustainable laboratories: Little LEAF

UCL students embed sustainability into the International Genetically Engineered Machine (iGEM) Competition

Little Leaf

19 November 2019

Whilst competing in the International Genetically Engineered Machine (iGEM) Competition, UCL students Clare Robinson and Rupali Dabas fashioned their own campaign to embed sustainability into the fabric of the competition. Taking inspiration from UCL’s Laboratory Efficiency Assessment Framework (LEAF), which provides criteria to help departments make their labs sustainable, the ‘Emerald Challenge’ (emerald being a green gem) seeks to help students competing in the iGEM competition practice sustainable research. To gain ‘Emerald Status,’ students must complete a set of criteria from taking photographs of positive sustainability practices, to listing the materials which are usable for future contestants, and documenting negative-findings to prevent repetition of research. UCL’s iGEM team have been meeting with Westminster and Oxford teams to launch the challenge. It is now taking on the title of ‘Little LEAF’.