ISO 14001 Certification
The ISO 14001 Environment Management System (EMS) standard is an internationally recognized environmental management standard which was first published in 1996. It is a systematic framework to manage the immediate and long term environmental impacts of an organization’s products, services and processes. Certification Europe is accredited to certify your environmental management system to the ISO 14001 standard.
ISO 14001 is an international standard established by the International Organization for Standardization through dedicated technical committees representing around 150 countries around the world. Its purpose is to enable an organization of any type or size to develop and implement a policy committing it to prevention of pollution, compliance with legal and other requirements, and constant improvement.
The realization of this commitment will be a management system that recognizes and manages the primary environmental issues through awareness and assessment of applicable legal requirements, objectives for improvement, assignment of responsibilities, competent personnel, communications, procedures, controls and monitoring, emergency response capability, self-correction and assessment, and internal reviews. These processes are to be based on the Plan-Do-Check-Act cycle.
The Plan cycle deals with the beginning stages of an organization becoming ISO 14001-compliant. The Check cycle deals with checking and correcting errors. The Do cycle is the implementation and operation of the ISO 14001 standard within an organization. The Review cycle is a review of the whole procedure by the organization's top management. And the Improve cycle is a cycle that never ends as an organization constantly finds ways to progress their EMS.
The whole procedure can take several months to several years depending on the size of the organization. If an organization is already ISO 9000-certified, the implementation of ISO 14001 does not take as long. When an organization is compliant, they can either register with a third-party registrar or self-declare their compliance. The ISO 14001 standard is the only ISO 14000 standards that permits an organization to be registered or "certified.
Benefits of ISO 14001 Certification
- Showing your business partners, regulatory agencies, and community that you are environmentally responsible.
- Given that potentially fewer surveillance visits from regulatory agencies.
- Providing your company with assurance that you meet, and will continue to meet, your environmental management system commitments and corporate policy requirements.
- Increasing competitiveness.
- Reducing your environmental liability.
- Reducing costs as a result of potentially lower insurance rates.
- Increasing profits through potential procedure improvements and energy conservation.
- Verifying your systems for recognizing and complying with environmental laws and regulations.
- Improving relations with regulators - organizations that implement an ISO 14001 EMS often report enhanced relations with government regulatory agencies, find that regulators are quicker to provide technical support, and find that the regulators are much more supportive in general.
- Streamlining operations - organizations often realize financial savings as a result of greater operational efficiency and energy conservation, and reduction in use of hazardous materials and generation of hazardous wastes.
- Capturing institutional knowledge - ISO 14001 ensures this information is properly documented, communicated and retained. The cyclical nature of this management system further confirms all system information is reviewed and updated at least annually.
- Safety benefits – by reviewing the procedures for controlling significant operations, including a review of emergency preparedness and response procedures, organizations are able to identify and implement significant safety improvements.
- Increased awareness and participation - organizations benefit from better communication about environmental issues inside and outside the organization. ISO 14001 provides people an avenue to raise environmental issues and makes it clear that environmental performance is an important part of the corporate culture.