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ISO 14001 Environmental Management Systems Revision

on . Posted in ISO 14001

iso-14001-logoThe ISO 14001:2015 Revision

ISO 14001 Environmental management systems, is the most widely used standard.

Why revise the ISO 14001 standard?

Every five years the standard is revised to keep it current and relevant for the marketplace. The ISO 14001:2015 standard was developed to respond to be compatible with other management system standards (i.e. ISO 9001:2015).

The main changes to the standard

The key changes affect:
  • Increased importance of environmental management inside the organization's strategic plan
  • Increased focus on leadership
  • resource use and climate change mitigation
  • Lifecycle thinking when considering environmental aspects
  • Addition of proactive initiatives to protect the environment from harm and degradation, such as sustainable
  • Addition of a communications strategy
  • Improving environmental performance has been added
The revised standard follows a common structure, with the same terms and definitions as a number of other management system standards such as ISO 9001. This makes them easier, cheaper and quicker for those companies who use more than one, not to mention helping out the auditors.

Who revised the standard?

The revision process was conducted by a technical committee in ISO.  This committee is called ISO/TC 207/SC 1.  It is comprised of seasoned professionals nominated by their National Standards Bodies.

What does this mean for my organization if we are certified to ISO 14001:2004?

Organizations are granted a three-year transition period after the revision has been published to migrate their environmental management system to the new edition of the standard. After this transition period, companies that opt for third party certification will have to seek certification to the new version of the standard. The former version, ISO 14001:2004, and any certification to it, will be out of date. See further guidance from the International Accreditation Forum (IAF).