Environmental Management Systems (ISO 14001:2015)
Of the issues which currently dominate, and are set to continue to dominate, global political and economic discourse, none is more salient than environmental awareness.
In this climate of escalating concern for our environment, market leaders are increasingly turning their attention to the environmental impact of their activities, only too aware of the fact that the environmental performance of an organisation is increasingly becoming a primary concern to interested parties.
“Environment” is the watchword of the early twenty-first century, and this has fundamental and inescapable ramifications for business.
With environmental legislation set to proliferate exponentially, and public awareness of environmental issues gathering an inexorable momentum, effective environmental management is becoming indispensable to corporate success.
Achieving sound environmental performance requires organisational commitment to the systematic approach and continual improvement prescribed by an Environmental Management System. ISO 14001:2015 is the internationally recognised standard for environmental management proficiency, and a prerequisite for discerning consumers worldwide. The implementation of an EMS opens up previously inaccessible markets, communicating a standard of environmental competence in a universally comprehensible international business language.
In conjunction with ISO 9001:2015 (quality) and OHSAS 18001:2007 (occupational health & safety), ISO 14001:2015 forms the cornerstone of the twenty-first century corporate gold standard.
The benefits of an Environmental Management System
An Environmental Management System offers an organisation the critical competitive edge required to increase market share and profit, through the prescription of a framework to ensure optimal environmental and economic performance. The integration of environmental and economic interests allows optimal resource efficiency and cost reduction, resulting in significant operational performance improvement.
An EMS allows an organisation to effectively manage and control its interactions with the environment, facilitating the fulfilment of its environmental objectives as well as ensuring legislative compliance. In addition to achieving effective environmental management, the implementation of an EMS allows an organisation to demonstrate its environmental commitment and management proficiency to interested parties.
The direct benefits of an EMS include:
- Assuring customers of commitment to effective environmental management
- Satisfying investor criteria and improving access to capital
- Obtaining insurance at a reduced cost through the demonstration of improved risk management
- Improving cost control through waste reduction and efficient use of natural resources
- Reducing incidents that result in liability
- Conserving input materials and energy
- Ensuring compliance with existing legislative and policy requirements
- Facilitating the attainment of permits and authorisations and meeting their requirements
- Enhancing corporate image and environmental stewardship
- Securing bottom line benefits through efficient resource use, pollution reduction, lower waste treatment and disposal costs
An Environmental Management System is applicable to virtually any organisation, of any size and nature, anywhere in the world.
A commitment to protecting our environment is a global aim shared by all sectors of society, and is realizable only through a truly universal consensus.
With this belated realization finally thrust to the forefront of the global political and economic agenda, those organisations failing to demonstrate commitment to their environmental obligations are set to struggle in the twenty-first century global marketplace.