THE NEW ISO 14001:2015
September 15, ISO - International Organization for Standardization - has published the new 2015 edition of the standard ISO 14001 "Environmental management systems - Requirements with guidance for use" which replaces ISO 14001: 2004.
For entry into force, IAF - International Accreditation Forum - has set a transitional period of three years after publication, as decided by the General Assembly during the Vancouver meetings of October 2014 (IAF Resolution 2014 -11).
As of the date of publication of the new ISO 14001 standard, we are no longer accepted new accreditation applications that refer to the previous edition of ISO 14001: 2004.
As of the date of publication of the new ISO 14001 standard, continue to be accepted extension applications that refer to the previous edition of ISO 14001: 2004.
The text of the standard follows the new index of HLS, divided into 10 chapters and common to all future system requirements. substantially new chapters have been introduced, such as the 4 on the "context" and 5 on "Leadership". Others have been "restored", as chapter 9 performance evaluation that includes requirements on monitoring, audit and management review, 10 on the "Improvement" in which disappears the instrument of "preventive action" and 7 on the supporting processes.
In contrast, other chapters resume at the level of the previous HLS structure of ISO 14001: 2004, by imposing it for all management systems, as is the case in Chapter 6 devoted to planning.
The introduction and, above all, the point 4.4 on the "Management System" clearly explains how, among the results or outcomes of the Management System to be included the growth of the environmental performance of the organization itself, abandoning the partial ambiguity of the previous revision of the rule which made reference to the performance of the company management.
Considerations on the definitions
In the new standard are inserted new definitions and changes to existing definitions. In other cases, the definitions are confirmed. It is worth dwelling on some significant points.
And 'deeply it modified the definition of "interested party" which, in the new sense, can affect, be affected or thinking to be influenced by decisions or activities of the organization (and not only by the environmental performance).
They are substantially unchanged and the environment definitions, environmental and environmental impact aspect; Note that the Italian use of the word "environment" in the definition of "environment" has nothing to do with the "context of the organization", being the translation of English surroundings, having to be referred to an eminently physical sense and geographical.
The definition of "objective" has incorporated that of "milestone" and was divided into "targets" and "environmental objectives."
The "risk" is defined first in a neutral manner, as an effect, positive or negative, of an uncertainty. Subsequently, it is characterized as a "threat" as opposed to "opportunities." E 'in each case a new key element to be used for the setting of an effective EMS.
And 'it introduced the new definition of "sight" cycle that refers to ISO 14044: 2006, which supports the new requirements for the "life-cycle perspective."
It confirms the definition of "corrective action", but disappears that of "preventive action", replaced all the general effects of the rule approach, basing SGA on the analysis of risks and opportunities, see the system as a whole great all-encompassing preventive action.
The "continuous improvement", a fundamental requirement of the rule, is characterized as improving both the management system and environmental performance, and should be consistent with the organization's environmental policy.
The "organizational framework"
It is an absolute, fundamental novelty, introduced in chapter 4 of the HLS for all Management Systems.
The organization is called upon to analyze the "factors" - in English issues - that affect its ability to obtain these settings. The factors certainly include environmental conditions and changes in them, but they must also be considered the technological, financial, political, social, etc. For example, the Federal Reserve on the cost of the money or the EU political decision, Chinese and / or US on curbing greenhouse gas emissions, are "factors" to be considered differently depending on the activity, the size field , the reference markets, etc.. of an organization. It is part of the characterization of the context also the identification of the "stakeholders" and their expectations.
E 'should be noted that in the introduction is repeated the traditional graphic scheme Model Plan Do Check Act, but it is placed inside a larger pattern in which it highlighted the influence of the "context of the organization", represented by "internal and external factors" and "the stakeholder needs and expectations," of which we are called to take into account in the development of the Management System (§4.4).
Emphasis on "leadership"
Having rightly given up searching difficult translations in Italian very effective English terms and established use, chapter 5 "Leadership" has been inserted with its original title in the Italian version. The leading role of the High Directorate of the organization (in English top management) is strongly affirmed, and is divided into a number of points which, while recalling concepts already shared in the past, rely directly to active management roles. It should be emphasized in this regard that disappears the figure of / i "representative / s" Management.
New interesting proposal in this regard is constituted by the obligation for senior management to support managerial roles involved in various ways in the operation of the EMS in asserting themselves, their "leadership" (§5.1, point i). This requirement touches a deficiency that occurs very often, particularly when "environmental managers" are not perceived as sufficiently authoritative in rapp0orti with other business functions, typically, but not exclusively, the production, maintenance, purchasing, design, if not even the same direction.
Risks and opportunities
Also in this case it is an important novelty and common to all Management Systems.
The organization will have to determine the threats and opportunities (§6.1.1) that must be addressed and controlled (in English addressed) to obtain the expected results, without side effects and achieving continuous improvement. It is not required the application of ISO 31000, but can be useful to refer to the principles and criteria which it proposed. A typical opportunity may be the development of "green" products. A common threat to many organizations may be the difficulty of supporting technological progress required by the evolution of Community legislation (eg. Directive "Eco Design"). Often, threats and opportunities are two sides of the same coin. The structure of the text seems to indicate that the determination of the risks is the consequence of the context and the expectations of stakeholders.
The organization may consider such factors, risks and opportunities in the assessment of the significance of its environmental aspects, so as to ensure that its EMS is properly established, implemented and maintained. Risks and opportunities should instead be considered in the choice of environmental objectives.
The prospect of "life cycle"
The organization should identify and assess the environmental aspects of its products / services considering a "perspective of life cycle", ie considering the possible environmental impacts of products and / or services from the phases of the sourcing of raw materials through to disposal / ultimate recovery. Yet does not require the execution of a "life cycle analysis" in conformity with the ISO reference standards 14040 and following, the new ISO 14001 requires a specific analysis of these aspects and their translation into one oriented design consistent with the policies and business objectives, in operational requirements relating to the supply of goods and services and the identification of any information to be provided to customers on the use and disposal of products and services (§8.1).
The organization is called to define a communication process, both for the inside and towards the outside. In relation to external communication, it emphasizes a new requirement that provides for an obligation to ensure that the information that come out are reliable and correct. This requirement touches a sensitive issue related to marketing and advertising operations that sometimes have conveyed previously incomplete or misleading messages.