Osram Sylvania announced the introduction of an online calculator tool to help applicants pursuing the U.S. Green Building Council's (USGBC) LEED-EB certification determine the mercury content in their lighting.

One of the major initiatives of the USGBC is its Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED®) program, which was created to establish a common standard of measurement for "green buildings," promoting integrated, whole-building design practices.

LEED for Existing Buildings, or LEED-EB, is specifically tailored for retrofit and upgrade projects. LEED-EB addresses system upgrades to reduce the environmental impact of a building over its functional life cycle.

Using a whole-building approach that includes both interior and exterior lamps, LEED-EB has a prerequisite that all mercury-containing lamps must achieve a total maximum mercury level of 100 picograms per lumen hour, calculated on a weighted average based on lumen output, lamp life, and mercury content.

To help customers meet the Materials and Resources/MR Prerequisite #2 "Toxic Material Source Reduction - Reduced Mercury in Light Bulbs" standard of the LEED-EB rating system, OSRAM SYLVANIA developed a simple LEED-EB calculator to run the calculation and help customers choose their lighting upgrades to comply with this requirement.

"This tool will not only save our customers time on their LEED-EB application, but it will also help them make lighting choices that achieve their green building strategies, for both energy efficiency and mercury content," Jennifer Dolin, environmental marketing manager for OSRAM SYLVANIA's General Lighting division, said.

The calculator tool allows users to select lamps from a drop-down menu or research SYLVANIA lamp types and NAED codes. Once the user inputs the quantity of each type of lamp used in the project, the spreadsheet runs the calculation.

The LEED-EB calculator is available on www.sylvania.com and www.mysylvania.com.