New NIH Policy Promotes Energy Conservation for Ultra-Low Temperature Freezers

 
On July 1, 2016, NIH released a new Manual Chapter setting policy for the management of ultra-low temperature freezers.  The purpose of the policy is to promote energy efficiency and energy conservation, while improving the reliability of cold storage across NIH facilities. Benefits include lower operating costs, and improved functionality of freezers leading to fewer freezer malfunctions and failures.
 
In Brief, the Manual Chapter states:
The NIH will preserve and protect the viability of research materials in cold storage in an energy efficient manner. This policy:
 
(1) requires the selection of energy efficient ULT freezers when acquiring new units;
(2) requires all ULT freezers to be listed in the NIH Property System, and when no longer needed, disposed of according to property disposal requirements;
(3) requires regular maintenance to be performed on all ULT freezers; and
(4) directs the placement of ULT freezers in locations that are adequately ventilated, temperature controlled, and away from excessive foot-traffic.
 
This policy further establishes the procedures for the inspection of NIH facilities to ensure compliance with this policy; to note deficiencies; and to remedy non-compliant occurrences.
 
For more information:
 
The Office of Research Facilities with generous unwavering support from Institutes and Centers and entities within the Office of the Director developed this Manual Chapter. Many thanks to all those who supported this effort.