Friday 8 April 2016

ISO 14001 - Environmental Management System

ISO 14000 - Environmental management

The ISO 14000 family of standards provides practical tools for companies and organizations of all kinds looking to manage their environmental responsibilities.

ISO 14001:2015 and its supporting standards such as ISO 14006:2011 focus on environmental systems to achieve this. The other standards in the family focus on specific approaches such as audits, communications, labelling and life cycle analysis, as well as environmental challenges such as climate change.

An environmental management system helps organizations identify, manage, monitor and control their environmental issues in a holistic manner.

Like other ISO management systems, it uses a High-Level Structure. This means it can be integrated easily into any existing ISO management system.

It also includes the need for continual improvement of an organization’s systems and approach to environmental concerns.

What is ISO 14001?

ISO 14001 is an internationally agreed standard that sets out the requirements for an environmental management system.

It helps organizations improve their environmental performance through more efficient use of resources and reduction of waste, gaining a competitive advantage and the trust of stakeholders.

ISO 14001:2015

ISO 14001:2015 sets out the criteria for an environmental management system and can be certified to. It maps out a framework that a company or organization can follow to set up an effective environmental management system. It can be used by any organization regardless of its activity or sector.

Using ISO 14001:2015 can provide assurance to company management and employees as well as external stakeholders that environmental impact is being measured and improved.

There are more than 300,000 certifications to ISO 14001 in 171 countries around the world.

ISO 14001 has recently been revised to year 2005 version, with key improvements such as:

  • The increased prominence of environmental management within the organization’s strategic planning processes
  • Greater input from leadership
  • A stronger commitment to proactive initiatives that boost environmental performance 

ISO 14001:2015 now requires:

  • Environmental management to be more prominent within the organization’s strategic direction
  • A greater commitment from leadership
  • The implementation of proactive initiatives to protect the environment from harm and degradation
  • A focus on life-cycle thinking, to consider the environment from development to end-of-life
  • The addition of a stakeholder-focused communication strategy 

It also allows for easier integration into other management systems thanks to the same structure, terms and definitions.

Why was ISO 14001 revised?

All ISO standards are reviewed and revised regularly to make sure they remain relevant to the marketplace.

ISO 14001:2015 will respond to the latest trends, including the increasing recognition by companies of the need to factor in both external and internal elements that influence their environmental impact, such as climate volatility and the competitive context in which they work.

The changes also ensure that the standard is compatible with other management system standards.

Who is ISO 14001 for?

ISO 14001 is suitable for organizations of all types and sizes, be they private, not-for-profit or governmental.

It requires that an organization considers all environmental issues relevant to its operations, such as air pollution, water and sewage issues, waste management, soil contamination, climate change mitigation and adaptation, and resource use and efficiency.

What benefits will bring to my organisation?
Users of the standard have reported that ISO 14001:2015 helps:

  • Demonstrate compliance with current and future statutory and regulatory requirements
  • Increase leadership involvement and engagement of employees
  • Improve company reputation and the confidence of stakeholders through strategic communication
  • Achieve strategic business aims by incorporating environmental issues into business management
  • Provide a competitive and financial advantage through improved efficiencies and reduced costs
  • Encourage better environmental performance of suppliers by integrating them into the organization’s business systems

Other standards in ISO 14000 family

The ISO 14000 family comprises a number of standards that complement ISO 14001, some of which are listed below. Get more information in the brochure Environmental management – The ISO 14000 family of International Standards, a basic introduction to the ISO 14000 series of standards.

ISO 14004 provides guidance on the establishment, implementation, maintenance and improvement of an environmental management system and its coordination with other management systems.

ISO 14006 is intended to be used by those organizations that have implemented an environmental management system in accordance with ISO 14001, but can help integrate eco-design into other management systems.

ISO 14064-1 specifies principles and requirements at the organizational level for the quantification and reporting of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and removal.


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  2. Is there any ISO 14001 certified construction companies in Myanmar?