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Refrigerators / Freezers

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Design Guidance

Overall Strategies

Overview

Green Tips

  • Ensure refrigerators and freezers run efficiently through regular maintenance. Remove excess frost or defrost when ice is more than .25” thick, check door seals, and keep filters and coils free of dust.
  • Share refrigerator and freezer units with neighboring labs or consolidate and unplug units within a lab.
  • Clean out material that is no longer needed to create space and reduce the need for additional units.
  • Inventory and label samples and post map of contents on freezer to reduce search time. Better yet, use a sample storage database that is integrated into the experimental protocol, including expiration dates.
  • Encourage users to minimize the number of door openings and the length of time door is open by knowing exactly where their samples are located.
  • Store DNA at -20 degrees Celsius. It is robust and does not require ultra-low temperatures.
  • When it is time to upgrade or retire a piece of equipment, choose the most energy efficient model and smallest size per cubic foot of volume required. If precise temperature controls are not required, purchase an Energy Star residential refrigerator unit instead of buying a less efficient lab-grade refrigerator.
  • Locate freezers away from thermostats to avoid distorting their temperature readings.

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EB = Existing BuildingsNC = New Construction and Major Renovation

Legal Requirements

Guiding Principles

  • Energy Efficiency ( Guiding Principles, Executive Order <span>13693</span> [NC])
    Section: II. Optimize Energy Performance

    From the Guiding Principles for NC: “Employ strategies that minimize energy usage. Focus on reducing energy loads before considering renewable or clean and alternative energy sources. Use energy efficient products as required by statute.”
    Determining Compliance: “For new construction, ensure energy efficiency is 30% better than the current ASHRAE 90.1 standard. For modernization, ensure: (1) energy use is 20% below the fiscal year (FY) 2015 energy use Baseline, (2) energy use is 30% below the FY 2003 energy use baseline, (3) the building has an ENERGY STAR® rating of 75 or higher, or (4) for building types not in ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager, where adequate benchmarking data exists, the building is in the top quartile of energy performance for its building type. For new construction and modernization, use energy efficient products, as required by statute.”

  • Energy Efficiency ( Guiding Principles, Executive Order <span>13693</span> [EB])
    Section: II. Optimize Energy Performance

    From the Guiding Principles for EB: “Employ strategies that minimize energy usage. Focus on reducing energy loads before considering renewable or clean and alternative energy sources. Use energy efficient products as required by statute.”
    Determining Compliance: “Ensure: (1) the building has an ENERGY STAR rating of 75 or higher, (2) energy use is 20% below the FY 2015 energy use baseline, (3) energy use is 30% below the FY 2003 energy use baseline, or (4) energy efficiency is 30% better than the current ASHRAE 90.1 standard. Use energy efficient products, as required by statute.”

  • Material Content and Performance ( Guiding Principles, Executive Order <span>13693</span>&nbsp;[EB])
    Section: V. Reduce the Environmental Impact of Materials

    From the Guiding Principles for EB: Procure construction materials, products, and supplies that have a “lesser or reduced effect on human health and the environment over their life cycle when compared with competing products or services that serve the same purpose”, including:
    (i) “Use Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) section 6002 compliant products that meet or exceed EPA’s recycled content recommendations for building construction, modifications, operations, and maintenance.”
    (ii) “Per section 9002 of the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act (FSRIA), for USDA-designated products, use products with the highest content level per USDA’s biobased content recommendations.”
    (iii) “Purchase products that meet Federally Recommended Specifications, Standards and Ecolabels or are on the Federal Green Procurement Compilation.”
    (iv) Eliminate, to the maximum extent practicable, “ozone depleting compounds and high global warming potential (GWP) chemicals where EPA’s SNAP has identified acceptable substitutes or where other environmentally preferable products are available” during construction, repair, or replacement at the end of life.
    Determining Compliance: “Procure products that meet the following requirements where applicable: (A) RCRA section 6002, and (B) FSRIA section 9002, and (C) Federally Recommended Specifications, Standards and Ecolabels or are on the Federal Green Procurement Compilation for other green products, as appropriate, and (D) Avoid ozone depleting compounds and high GWP chemicals.”