IFA 2007: Liveblogging Philips going green

Energy systems, Gadget Shows, IFA 2007

You can’t get away from it. The future is green, and any CE company that doesn’t react to that isn’t going to last much longer. That’s why Philips are holding a workshop dedicated to their sustainability. So here we go.

From 2000, coverage of green issues in the media has increased 200%, apparently. It’s a hot topic for everyone from Richard & Judy to the Daily Mail. Philips want to be part of the solution, not part of the problem. Nice soundbite.

There’s a target to save 20% of current energy levels by 2020. The slide has got a load of global leader on it – weirdly, George Bush doesn’t feature…

The late 2000s is going to be identified as having ‘glamorous independence’. It’s called ‘egology’ – personalisation, different identities online, and making things convenient for us. How does sustainability fit in?

In 2002, Philips put in place a sustainability policy. The two issues it addressed was energy saving and healthcare. Being a good employer is key to their sustainability value. They’re arguing that in becoming a larger and larger company, they’re in a stronger position to help the environment.

Their sustainable initiatives focuses on 3 areas: new sustainable business, green products, and existing products.

‘Green flagship’ products are the independently accredited green products. Philips introduced 57 last year, and they’re now considered to be number 4 in the world at this by the Dow Jones Index.

EcoDesign is the design element. Each product group needs to produce a certain number of green flagship products each year. It’s an important part of the business. It’s also neccesary to look at things like the environmental impact of transporting the product, packaging and it’s options for end of life.

All suppliers must pass a lot of sustainability audits in order to be used, including things like labour policies. If these are breached, the relationship is terminated.

Waste reduction is an important issue, especially getting rid of products at the end of their life. This is increasingly being looked into, as it’s a subject gaining awareness in the public.

Energy efficiency: this is a big focus for th TVs. All TVs have less than one watt energy consumption when on standby – if you leave it on standby all year, it’ll cost you no more than 30 euro cents. They have dimmable backlights. A light sensor on the front of the TVs automatically adjust the picture brightness according to how bright the room is, so will use less power when it’s needed. The technology combination from Philips resuts in a 30% energy saving compared to other LCD televisions.

Ambilight obviously uses more electricity, but they’ve found that people tend to turn off room lights when using Ambilight, so in actual fact, the saving is far greater.

Philips have introd a green logo, which makes it easy for consumers to identify the best products if they’re buying based on energy concerns. It’s across the range of products, from TVs to MP3 players.

Susi Weaser
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