C2.1.3 Introduction to ISO 14001


ISO 14001 is the International Standard for Environmental Management. It is aimed at all types of organisations and can be implemented within any business anywhere in the world.

It specifies a process for controlling an organisation’s environmental performance. The underlying element of the standard is Continual Improvement.

To establish and EMS that conforms to ISO 14001 you must obtain a copy of the standard and then implement your EMS in accordance with each of the requirements. The standard should help your organisation identify, prioritise and manage its environmental risks.

The actual standard is contained within the document: “BS EN ISO 14001:2004 – Environmental management systems — Requirements with guidance for use.”. This is the specification, which details the requirements of the standard.

There is also an associated document, “BS EN ISO 14004:2004 – Environmental management systems — General guidelines on principles, systems and support techniques.” This is not the standard itself, but a guidance document that will assist you in implementing the standard.

ISO 14001 = the EMS standard.

ISO 14004 = a guidance document to help you implement ISO 14001.