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Changes to ISO 14001 receive Overwhelming Support from the Sustainability Sector

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

The upcoming revisions to the ISO 14001 Environmental Management System standard have been welcomed by more than 90% of environmental and sustainability professionals says the Institute of Environmental Management and Assessment (IEMA).

The ISO 14001 standard sets out the criteria for an Environmental Management System (EMS) and is the world’s most popular and internationally recognised EMS standard.  More than 11,00 organisations are certified to the scheme in the UK, and more than 300,000 organisations are certified globally. 

ISO 14001 is currently undergoing a comprehensive review in order to ensure the standard remains up to date and relevant to today’s businesses and organisations.

The upcoming changes to ISO 14001, which are expected to come into force in Autumn 2015, will see the standard better integrated into core business processes and strategy, and will also have greater focus on leadership, top management and communicational performance. 

IEMA has been actively engaged throughout the revision of the standard and says it has had 'overwhelming support' for the changes so far. 

The Institute’s latest survey on the Draft International Standard (DIS) showed that over 90% of sustainability professionals are in favour of the proposals to align environmental management systems with an organisation's strategy.  Furthermore, 84% of members support the extra emphasis being placed on reducing environmental impacts across the whole life-cycle of products and services, including organisational supply chains.  

In addition, 92% of respondents believe that ISO 14001 needs to strengthen requirements on organisations to demonstrate their legal compliance and environmental performance improvements, while more than 88% believe that the standard should require organisations to consider impacts from a changing environment. 

The results from the IEMA survey come two weeks after the International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO) confirmed a significant growth in the number of ISO 14001 EMS in 2013, which has grown by 6% to 301,647 global certificates. 

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