Environmental management—International Standard ISO 14001:2015
Produced in partnership with Ardea International
Environmental management—International Standard ISO 14001:2015

The following Environment guidance note Produced in partnership with Ardea International provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Environmental management—International Standard ISO 14001:2015
  • What is ISO 14001:2015?
  • Revision of ISO 14001
  • Leadership
  • Context of the organisation
  • Planning
  • Objectives, targets and management systems
  • Compliance obligations
  • Interested parties
  • Operational controls
  • more

What is ISO 14001:2015?

ISO 14001:2015 is an internationally accepted standard that defines the requirements for establishing, implementing and operating an environmental management system (EMS). It is part of the ISO 14000 family of standards for managing environmental responsibilities. It aims to provide a structured approach to planning, implementing and managing an EMS. It is not a regulation or legally required standard, but a set of formal documented procedures subject to third party audit and verification. The guidance for use of the standard states that it can be used, either in whole or in part, to systematically improve environmental management.

ISO 14001:2015 is a voluntarily standard designed to be adopted by organisations operating in any sector. Registration/certification is not mandatory. An organisation may self-declare its EMS, setting out details of any third party audit and verification that has been undertaken.

Implementation is based on a 'plan-do-check-act' (PDCA) cycle, requiring ongoing review and continual improvement, evidenced by EMS documentation and records.

Registration/certification of an organisation under ISO 14001:2015 provides investors, lenders, insurers and employees with some comfort that the organisation has the tools and procedures to eliminate or mitigate any adverse impacts it may have on the environment.

Since the 2015 update to ISO 14001, guidelines for implementing and strengthening specific aspects of an EMS have been published. The full ISO 14000 series