How new version ISO 14001:2015 useful for Environmental Management System

ISO 14001: 2015 specifies requirements for an Environmental Management System an organization can use to improve its environmental performance. ISO 14001: 2015 is intended for use by an organization that seeks to manage its environmental responsibilities in a systematic way that contributes to the environmental pillar of sustainable development.

ISO 14001:2015 Certification helps an organization achieve the expected results of its environmental management system, which provide value for the environment, the organization itself and stakeholders. According to the environmental policy of the organization, the expected results of an environmental management system include:

  • Enhancement of environmental performance;
  • Fulfillment of compliance obligations;
  • Achievement of environmental objectives.

What is new in ISO 14001:2015?

Integrated approach with other standards such as ISO 9001, EMS 14001: 2015, using the same terms and definitions. ISO 14001 is the strategic management of the environment by identifying and taking advantage of opportunities which benefit the environment and society. New article on leadership with specific roles to promote environmental management within the organization. The emphasis on environmental protection through proactive initiatives commits.

  • Strategic environmental management

It is a new requirement to understand the context of the organization to identify internal and external issues relevant to the organization and the environment, with actions to address them in the Environmental Management System (EMS).

  • Leadership

A new clause has been added with special responsibilities for top management to express their leadership and commitment to environmental management. Management may assign this responsibility to others, but retain responsibility.

  • Environmental protection

Environmental policy must include a commitment to the “environmental protection”. There is no definition of “protection” includes “prevention of pollution” and “other” commitments, such as the sustainable use of resources, climate change mitigation and adaptation, protection biodiversity and ecosystems, etc.

  • Environmental performance

The main objective is the improvement of performance related to the management of environmental aspects. The body has to decide on criteria for assessing its environmental performance, using the correct indicators.

  • Communication

Focus on internal and external communication and equal treatment of the two was added. The decision to communicate with the outside is retained by the organization while taking into account their compliance obligations.

  • ISO 14001: 2004 TRANSITION

Organizations that are already certified ISO 14001: 2004 will have three years from the official publication of ISO 14001: 2015 in which to transfer to the new version of this standard. Based on the current release schedule, this transition period will end in September 2018.