ISO 14001:2015 – Environment Management System

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New version of ISO 14001 has been released as ISO 14001:2015. The new version will include a requirement to understand the organization’s context in order to better manage risk, with more emphasis made on leaders within organizations to promote environmental management. In addition there will be a shift towards improving environmental performance rather than improving the management system.

ISO 14001:2015 Most Important Changes

The most important changes summarized along the chapters of the standard:

Chapter 4 “Context of the Organization“: In this clause, draft standard accommodates the objective of companies giving more consideration to external issues and impacts in their environmental management system. The needs and expectations of “interested parties” are to be better understood and evaluated as to whether they give rise to specific requirements.

Chapter 5 “Leadership“: In this clause, Top management should require to take on more responsibility for the effective implementation of the management system and the integration of environmental management into business processes. The environmental policy also includes a commitment to protect the environment beyond the corporate boundaries. A requirement of management representative is no longer being clearly requested, but adequate responsibilities and authorities must be ensured within the organization.

Chapter 6 “Planning“: In this clause, the entire planning process of the organization in respective of environmental management has been restructured. All positive and negative environmental impacts of activities, products and services should account by the organization. Organization also presents environmental impacts more strongly in “from a life cycle perspective” in the future. Although the environmental assessment does not need to explicitly include a life cycle assessment of products and processes for example, it should nevertheless examine the significant environmental aspects and all required commitments

Chapter 7 “Support”: In this clause, the commitments to environmental protection are to be given more consideration in terms of communications as well. External representation and reporting must be regulated. With respect to documents and records, only the term “documented information” shall be used in the future, thus taking account of modern recording media.

Chapter 8 “Operation“: Operational scheduling and control should pay closer attention to upstream and downstream and, in particular, outsourced processes. This also includes the environmental impacts of products and services right through to the end of their utilization.

Chapter 9 “Performance evaluation“: Based on the extended environmental assessment (see Chap. 6), standards for what is expected of the environmental performance evaluation are now also being raised. This must happen as early as environmental objectives are set (Chap. 6), where, insofar as appropriate and possible, indicators for measuring achievement of said objectives and thus environmental performance are to be used. The ISO 14031 standard “Environmental Management – Environmental Performance Evaluation” shall be referred to for this purpose. Working with key performance indicators has hereby also been incorporated into environmental management. From now on, monitoring and measuring will also explicitly include all other corporate commitments and risks in relation to environmental performance.

Chapter 10 “Improvement“: The correction of non-conformities as well as the continual improvement process will now be focusing more on the organization’s surroundings and the improvement of environmental performance.

ISO 14001:2015 – Summary of Changes

ISO 14001:2004 ISO 14001:2015 REMARKS
0 Introduction 0 Introduction
1 Scope 1 Scope
2 Normative references 2 Normative references
3 Terms and definitions 3 Terms and definitions
4 Environmental Management System 4 Context of the organization
  4.1. Understanding the organization and its context New Clause
  4.2. Understanding the needs and expectations of interested parties New Clause
1 General requirements 4.3. Determining the scope of the quality management system
4.4. Quality Management System
10.2. Continual Improvement
4.2 Environmental Policy 5.2 Environmental Policy
4.3 Planning 6 Planning
  Actions to address risks and Opportunities. New Clause
6.1.1. General
4.3.1 Environmental aspects 6.1.2 Identification of environmental hazards
6.1.4 Determining significant environmental aspects and organizational risks and opportunities
4.3.2 Legal and other requirements 6.1.3 Determination of  compliance obligations
4.3.3 Objectives, targets and programme(s) 6.2 Environmental objectives and planning to achieve them
6.2.1 Environmental objectives
6.2.2 Planning to achieve objectives New Clause
4.4 Implementation and operation (title only) 7.0 Support (title only)
8.0 Operation (title only)
5.0 Leadership (title only)
4.4.1 Resources, roles, responsibility and authority 7.1 Resources
5.3 Organizational roles, responsibilities and authorities
5.1 Leadership and commitment
4.4.2 Competence, training and awareness 7.2 Competence
7.3 Awareness
4.4.3 Communication 7.4 Communication (title only)
7.4.1 General
7.4.2 Internal communication New Clause
7.4.3 External communication and reporting New Clause
4.4.4 Documentation 7.5 Documented information (title only) New Clause
7.5.1 General
4.4.5 Control of documentation 7.5.2 Creating and updating New Clause
7.5.3 Control of documented information
4.4.6 Operational control 8.1 Operational planning and control
8.2 Value chain control New Clause
4.4.7 Emergency preparedness and response 8.3 Emergency preparedness and response
4.5 Checking (title only) 9 Performance evaluation (title only)
4.5.1 Monitoring and measurement 9.1 Monitoring, measurement, analysis and evaluation (title only)
9.1.1 General
4.5.2 Evaluation of compliance 9.1.2 Evaluation of compliance
4.5.3 Nonconformity, corrective action and preventive action 10.1 Nonconformity and corrective action
4.5.4 Control of Records 7.5.3 Control of documented information New Clause
4.5.5 Internal Audit 9.2 Internal Audit
4.6 Management Review 9.3 Management Review
  10 Improvement (title only)

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Source: Information collected from ISO Website

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