A ISO 14001 History Lesson
The first environmental standard came out of the UK , BS 7750, in 1992. In 1996 ISO created ISO 14000. ISO 14001 was revised in 2004 and again in 2015. The 2015 edition is the current version of the standard and is titled “Environmental management systems – requirements with guidance for use”.
Compatibility of ISO 14001
ISO 14001:2015 follows Annex SL and is compatible for implementation with ISO 9001”Quality management systems – requirements” and ISO 45001 “Occupational health and safety”. ISO 14001 is also fully compatible with ISO 13485 “Medical Device – Quality management systems – Requirements for regulatory purposes” even though ISO 13485 does not follow Annex SL. All of these standards utilize a process approach.
ISO 14001 expects the utilization of risk-based thinking. This is not new for most organizations when it comes to addressing the environment. Increasing restriction and governmental regulations have brought the impact of an organization’s actions and handling of waste material to the forefront of management concerns.
ISO 14001 Benefits
ISO 14001 is all about reducing waste in the supply chain. If waste can be reduced, whether that is materials or energy the bottom line benefits. Pricing already included the cost of that waste. If costs are reduced and prices remain the same, profitability is increased. The alternative is to use the reduced cost to reduce prices and increase business. No matter which option your organization selects the results is the same – more profits.
This standard does not stop at your doorstep. It expects the organization to work with their suppliers to reduce waste and to consider how to reduce the processing of waste when the product reaches end of life. There are a number of marketing tools for receiving back end of life product as a credit toward a new purchase and selling the returned produce for harvesting of components.
Environmental regulation have become more stringent over time. The implementation of ISO 14001 can be a tool to stay ahead of regulatory changes, eliminating fines and providing the perception your organization is a positive benefit to the community.
Moving forward with ISO 14001
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