Sugar cookies in the shape of beakers that looked like they were holding green liquid were a win to celebrate the MGL certification. All compliance department staff members enjoyed the treats. Left to right: Mindi Dearing, Alyssa Liddle, Laura Ortega, Brina Smith, and Nikki Holloway.
The mission of Beaver Water District (BWD) is to sustainably provide our customers with safe, economical drinking water. In accordance with this mission, the compliance lab has embraced a sustainable path earning a certification from My Green Lab (MGL). This significant achievement marks BWD as the first Drinking Water Treatment Laboratory in the Americas to attain a high-level sustainability certification.
Producing over 15,000 analytical results annually, the compliance lab plays a crucial role in ensuring that the water leaving BWD’s treatment facility not only meets but exceeds all regulatory standards. It also helps our operations department monitor treatment processes, and aids our extensive source water protection program. With this level of productivity comes a large ecological footprint. Laboratories use a lot of water, energy, and consumable items. While a push for higher productivity rates has benefited BWD, sustainability had suffered. For example, re-usable glass containers had been replaced by single-use plastics and an increased focus on lab safety measures and additional sample load had increased the amount of latex and nitrile gloves used. These are just a few of the practices that were reexamined for certification.
The lab staff at BWD took it upon themselves over the last year to combat this footprint and embarked on a journey towards sustainability. The group partnered with MGL, the global leader in laboratory sustainability and currently the only sustainability lab certification provider. My Green Lab is a non-profit based in California that works with laboratory staff, laboratory suppliers, and regulators all over the world to increase sustainability in the sector.
The BWD lab began by evaluating the processes they currently use. My Green Lab’s insights paved the way for improvements, ranging from simple adjustments to more intricate changes that required collaboration with various departments and, at times, additional budgetary considerations. Over an eight-month period, the lab staff diligently prioritized initiatives that promised the most significant environmental impact without compromising lab productivity or the quality of test results.
After changes had been implemented, MGL once again evaluated the lab’s processes and awarded BWD’s Compliance Lab a sustainability certification. This accomplishment emphasizes BWD’s commitment to delivering high-quality water with the utmost consideration for the environment.