Sustainability in the IVF laboratory: recommendations of an expert panel

Francesca Farlie, Giles A. Palmer, Jacques Cohen, Charles Calcagni, Anna Gorbunova, James Lawford Davies, Carol Loscher, Roisin O'Raghallaigh, Timothy Sharp, Daniela Smale, Pernilla Sörme, Cassandra L. Thiel, Alessandra Alteri, Alison Campbell, Kirsty Crompton, Sharon Mortimer, Valerio Pisaturo, Annelies Tolpe, Mina Alikani

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


The healthcare industry is a major contributor to greenhouse gas emissions. Assisted reproductive technology is part of the larger healthcare sector, with its own heavy carbon footprint. The social, economic and environmental costs of this collective carbon footprint are becoming clearer, as is the impact on human reproductive health. Alpha Scientists in Reproductive Medicine and the International IVF Initiative collaborated to seek and formulate practical recommendations for sustainability in IVF laboratories. An international panel of experts, enthusiasts and professionals in reproductive medicine, environmental science, architecture, biorepository and law convened to discuss the topics of importance to sustainability. Recommendations were issued on how to build a culture of sustainability in the workplace, implement green design and building, use life cycle analysis to determine the environmental impact, manage cryostorage more sustainably, and understand and manage laboratory waste with prevention as a primary goal. The panel explored whether the industry supporting IVF is sustainable. An example is provided to illustrate the application of green principles to an IVF laboratory through a certification programme. The UK legislative landscape surrounding sustainability is also discussed and a few recommendations on ‘Green Conferencing’ are offered.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number103600
JournalReproductive BioMedicine Online
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2024


  • Carbon footprint
  • Climate change
  • Green certification
  • IVF sustainability
  • Life-cycle analysis
  • Waste management

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology
  • Developmental Biology


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