C2.1 Environmental Management Systems



People are more and more aware of environmental issues. Customers demand more environmentally responsible products and services (such as purchasing items with less packaging, choosing recycled paper or purchasing wood from sustainable sources). The public expect companies to demonstrate a commitment to the environment, as do shareholders.

This had led to environmental issues becoming part of board room agendas. Stakeholders and Clients now want proof that companies are acting in an environmentally responsible manner.

An effective way for organisations to demonstrate that they manage their environmental performance is through the implementation of an Environmental Management System (EMS). An EMS is a structured framework to help organisations manage their environmental issues.


What is an EMS?

An Environmental Management System (EMS) is a management tool to assist an organisation in improving its environmental performance. There are different types of EMS, but they all follow the same principle, a continual cycle of Plan – Do – Check – Act with the aim of achieving continual improvement in environmental performance.

Plan what you are going to do. Do what you said you would. Check that it has gone as planned. Take action if it hasn’t.