Lab Energy Challenge 2016

The Lab Energy Challenge took place April 19-May 13, 2016.

The Lab Energy Challenge is now over. The competition was fierce and the teams kept us guessing until the last moment. Impressive work everyone! Congratulations for finishing the race and thanks for your efforts and commitment to energy savings in your labs!

What teams participated & what were the final scores?

112 researchers from 18 teams participated and completed a total of 109 activities during the competition.

Congratulations to the 4 Grand Prize winners for completing all the activities!  The Mighty Mice, Gatsuuchi Mold, Biotechnology & Bioenergy, Team Sheldon tied and won in the ULT category, while the Wood Whackers won in the non-ULT category.

Congratulations also go to the weekly participation prize winners! The Bandana Scientists, MacLachlan Clan, Team SST, and the Wood Whackers submitted activities each week and won a prize.


  • Mighty Mice - Centre for Comparative Medicine: 240 pts (winners)
  • Gatsuuchi Mold - Microbiology & Immunology/Zoology (LSC): 240 pts (winners)
  • Biotechnology & Bioenergy Group - Wood Science: 240 pts (winners)
  • Team Sheldon - Centre for Blood Research (LSC): 240 pts (winners)
  • Wood Whackers - Wood Science (non-ULT): 120 pts (winners)
  • Team SST - Pharmaceutical Sciences: 220 pts
  • Terp-Nerds - Michael Smith Laboratories: 170 pts
  • Bandana Scientists - Pharmaceutical Sciences: 160 pts
  • The Minions - UBCO Biology/RMS: 160 pts
  • Super PACC - Contextual Genomics: 105 pts
  • MacLachlan Clan - Chemistry (non-ULT): 95 pts
  • Medicinal Inorganic Chemistry - Chemistry (non-ULT): 85 pts
  • The Knockouts - Michael Smith Labs: 80 pts
  • The Labinators - Michael Smith Labs: 35 pts
  • Team Art! - Art History, Visual Art & Theory (non-ULT): 15 pts
  • ESF SEAL Team - Risk Management Services (non-ULT): 15 pts

What were the activities and prizes?

Review a full description of the challenge Activities & Rules. Teams received ‘how-to’ guides and other resources. The prizes included visa gift cards: $250 for grand winners and $50 for weekly participation.

How did teams participate?

All UBC research labs with freezers and other electrical equipment were eligible to participate. Teams of 5-10 people were formed and fun team names were chosen. Teams saved energy by completing challenge activities. All teams who submitted completed challenge activities were eligible for weekly prize draws. Teams had to complete a minimum of 4 activities out of the several challenge activities over the four week competition. Teams with the highest number of points (in both the freezer and non-freezer category) were eligible for the Grand Prizes.

What was the challenge about?

The Lab Energy Challenge was a fun competition for researchers to tune up their labs and conserve energy. This friendly competition aimed to support UBC’s Climate Action Plan and energy reduction goals by engaging and educating lab users across campus about energy conservation best practices.

Why have a Lab Energy Challenge?

Laboratory spaces use 10 times more energy than other types of spaces on campus as a result of high ventilation rates and energy intensive equipment that are necessary to support research. In particular, freezers are one of the most energy intensive pieces of lab equipment. The energy used for one new ultra low temperature (ULT) freezer is enough to power a single family home. In fact, freezers alone account for about 2% of total campus energy use.

Who organized the challenge?

The Lab Energy Challenge was organized by Risk Management Services, Campus + Community Planning, and Energy & Water Services, with funding from BC Hydro and support from Prism Engineering.

For more information, contact us at green.labs@ubc.ca