Philips Improves Carbon Footprint; Lighting Drives Product Efficiency

by | Feb 25, 2011

Philips Electronics has achieved a seven percent reduction in its carbon footprint and increased operational energy efficiency by six percent between 2009 and 2010.

The company reduced its operational carbon footprint from 1,937 to 1,808 kilotons CO2-equivalent between 2009 and 2010, according to the company’s 2010 annual report.

In that time Philips improved its energy efficiency from 1.35 to 1.26 terajoules per million euro sales – its first energy efficiency improvement since 2007. The figure rose in 2008 and 2009.

In 2010, Philips invested more than 450 million euros in “green innovation”, meeting its target for a cumulative 1 billion euro investment two years ahead of schedule.

The company has announced it will allocate an additional 2 billion euros to the innovation program by 2015.

Meanwhile, green product sales rose to 38 percent of overall sales, up from 31 percent in 2009. For the second year running it met a target to generate 30% of total revenues from green products, and it has a new target of 50 percent by 2015.

The company has different green innovation priorities for each area of its business. In healthcare, innovation projects aim to reduce total lifecycle impact, particularly energy consumption, weight and radiation dose.

Consumer lifestyle green innovation focuses on developing new environmentally-friendly products, enhancing energy efficiency and closing material loops. That part of the business worked on the voluntarily phase-out of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) and brominated flame retardants (BFR), enabling Philip’s lifestyle entertainment and personal care businesses to launch products completely free of these substances, Philips said.

Eliminating those substances helped Philips hang onto its third-place spot in the Greenpeace Guide to Greener Electronics.

Consumer lifestyle investments also led to Philips introducing its Economva LED TV.

The lighting sector accounts for over half of Philips’ spend on green innovation and contributes to about 45 percent of its green product sales. In this sector the company focuses on developing energy-efficient lighting, enhancing existing green products and developing new types of technology such as solid-state lighting.

In 2010, Philips declared that sustainability is an integral part of its strategy and a key driver of growth for the company. The company announced its EcoVision5 program, which includes key performance indicators related to sustainability leadership. These are:

  • Improving energy efficiency of Philips products: Goal of 50 percent improvement by 2015 (for the average total product portfolio) compared to 2009. Product energy efficiency improved by 4 percent in 2010, the company said, with lighting contributing the most improvements.
  • Closing the materials loop: Double global collection and recycling amounts and recycled materials in products by 2015 compared to a 2009. In October Philips flunked a recycling report card released by the Electronics TakeBack Coalition.
  • Bringing care to people: Goal of 500 million “lives touched” by 2015 – the company says it touched 420 million lives in 2010, mainly driven by its healthcare sector.

In 2010, Philips also audited 273 supplier sites against it supplier sustainability declarations – increasing the number of audited sites by 21 percent, to a total of 1,591 full scope audits since 2005.

Philips announced that for the first time, it will not make its annual report available in a print version, though users can download and print the report from its website.

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