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Sustainability Criteria for Our Products

To measure the sustainability of our products, OSRAM has identified the following relevant performance characteristics.

Performance indicators

Key Performance Indicators

Efficacy, Life, Hazardous materials

The three values in the inner circle constitute pivotal indicators for the sustainable performance of our products. Concerning these indicators, we follow a ’no step backwards’ policy when developing new products. Hence, we make it our responsibility to consistently improve the efficacy and life of our products and to further reduce their hazardous contents. This way, we assure a process of continuous improvement.


The efficacy of a lightsource is calculated in lumens per watt (lm/W). Typical values range from 10 lm/W for incandescent lamps and 70 lm/W for compact fluorescent lamps to over 100 lm/W for high intensity discharge and LED-lamps. For the ecology, high efficacy means producing the needed light with as little energy as possible and thus reducing the CO2 emitted through the production of electricity. Above that, a high efficacy helps the customer save on energy bills.


In several aspects the rated life of product is of great importance. A longer lasting product means less use of resources, less cost for transportation, and less waste to be recycled at the end of its life. In brief, less environmental impact per hour of light. In addition to this environmental advantage, the customer benefits from a longer life in terms of not having to replace the products as often.

Hazardous Materials

Modern lighting technology consists of highly complex products using different technologies to generate light. Back in 1967, we were one of the first manufacturers to produce lamps without the carcinogenic metal beryllium in phosphor lamps. Since then, we have constantly reduced or eliminated hazardous materials in our products and strive for further reduction or elimination. But in some OSRAM products the use of harmful substances is still unavoidable at present. In the last few years mercury has moved into public focus owing to the discussion on replacing inefficient incandescent lamps with compact fluorescent lamps, which contain minute amounts of mercury. However, for this group of lamps, using mercury continues to be unmatched for generating energy efficient lighting.

In addition to mercury, there are other hazardous substances that are necessary for modern lighting products. To minimize their use, OSRAM has compiled an Index List Environment (ILE) which contains substances we prohibit in our products, and substances which we are reducing to the lowest possible levels. To manage their content in our products, we require our suppliers to peruse our ILE, disclose any relevant substance, and confirm their compliance with all these provisions.

As a matter of course, OSRAM complies with the European directive on the restriction of the use of certain hazardous substances in electrical and electronic equipment (RoHS) which aims to reduce the use of hazardous chemicals in the production process. In addition, OSRAM conforms to the framework of the European regulation REACH since we import or produce chemicals. The regulation provides for the Registration, Evaluation, Authorization and Restriction of Chemicals (REACH).

Secondary Performance Indicators

Secondary Performance Indicators

Depending on the application, other characteristics may also contribute to the sustainability of a product. We monitor the following additional indicators for our products.

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