The revision of ISO 14001, one of ISO’s most widely used standards, has now entered its last stage, with the new version due to be published by September 2015.
We have now moved to Final Draft International Stage (FDIS), which means that ISO members involved in the revision had until 2 September to vote and comment on the draft.
The key changes relate to:
- Increased prominence of environmental management within the organization's strategic planning processes
- Greater focus on leadership
- Addition of proactive initiatives to protect the environment from harm and degradation, such as sustainable resource use and climate change mitigation
- Improving environmental performance added
- Lifecycle thinking when considering environmental aspects
- Addition of a communications strategy
In addition, the revised standard will follow 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!
Organizations are granted a 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 The former version, ISO 14001:2004, and any certification to it, will be out of date.