The environment provides us with the basic life support system, including air, water, food and land. The atmosphere and its ecological health is being negatively impacted due to the unwarranted disposal of waste into the earth’s natural resource pool. Studies show that over 70% of total office waste is recyclable; however, only 7.5% gets recycled. The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) has developed ISO 14001 Certification to improve the environmental performance of organizations.
What is ISO 14001 Certification – Environment Management System?
ISO 14001 certification is an Environment Management System (EMS) standard that provides a framework for providing the environment and reducing waste management costs. ISO 14001 standard compliance demonstrates an organization’s commitment to helping businesses and other industries to reduce their environmental impacts.
ISO 14001 standard focuses on enhancing an organization’s environmental performance and helps organizations systematically manage their environmental responsibilities to contribute to the environmental pillar of sustainability.
What are the ISO 14001 Certification Checklist?
ISO 14001 certification aims to enhance an organization’s environmental performance and eliminate all those processes and procedures that can cause negative environmental impacts. The legal requirement of ISO 14001 certification checklist is as follows:
- Evaluating the organization and building a team
- Demonstrating leadership
- Establishing an effective communication system
- Encouraging employees to participate actively
- Determining the action plan and scope of the Environment Management System
- Creating an ISO 14001 Certification Project Plan
- Provides Management Tools
- Reviewing and Monitoring the Performance of ISO 14001 Certification
- Conducting ISO 14001 Mandatory Internal Audit
- Acquiring an ISO 14001 Certification that Promotes Certification and Sustainability
- Measuring the Results
- Continuous Improvement
Six Key Elements of ISO 14001 Certification
- Environment Policy – It requires an organization to outline its environmental policy. An organization must determine business objectives and targets based on its Environment policy. ISO 14001:2015 standard incorporates the principle of sustainable development and performance indicators associated with EMS. The organization needs to establish effective communication, internal and external, to ensure ISO 14001 certification compliance.
- Planning – Designing plans and strategies for implementing the Environment Management System (EMS). Effective planning and implementation help an organization assess the environmental impacts of business operations. Planning helps organizations identify compliance requirements and document targets and objectives.
- Implementation – Executing a plan efficiently and effectively is much more valuable than formulating it. It incorporates adjustments and builds new processes and procedures to adapt to changing requirements. An organization requires defining, documenting and communicating the implementation process to give necessary training to employees. It also includes emergency response planning and preparedness.
- Study and Correction – After implementing the EMS, the organization measures its performance and focuses on optimizing it. It involves reviewing and evaluating existing and new procedures to ensure KPIs are achieved and the effectiveness of EMS.
- Management Review – A management review is a formal evaluation of the effectiveness of the organization’s Environment Management System. It is one of the most significant elements, as it ensures that everything is functioning within the determined scope. It takes into account any new environmental issue, legislation and changing circumstances.
- Continuous Improvement – It enables an organization to optimize all aspects of the system and ensures the Environment Management System (EMS) utilizes principles of continuous improvement. The principle of continuous improvement follows the Plan-Do-Check-Act cycle to improve business processes and procedures.
ISO 14001 certification is an internationally recognized standard developed by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) that provides a framework for enhancing an organization’s environmental performance. It is a generic standard, and any organization can apply for ISO 14001 standard regardless of size, nature and location. The cost of ISO 14001 Certification varies from organization to organization depending on its size, number of employees, number of branches and the certification body selected by the organization.
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