ISO14001:2015 is an environmental management standard. It sets out a number of ideas that help organisations to reduce their impact on the environment.
Where organisations demonstrate to a Certification Body (CB), like BSI, that they have implemented these ideas, or clauses of ISO14001:2015, the CB may certify them to the standard.
Most organisations have ISO14001 in order to fulfil a customer requirement, or to be able to tender for a contract. It therefore is a way for organisations to try to improve their sales.
However, with the increasing demand for organizations to be greener, Best Practice organisations will use the standard to as a focus for their environmental improvement activities. This type of organization, using the ideas in ISO14001:2015 as they are intended, can see significant energy and related cost savings, become better at complying with increasing environmental legislation, enhance life cycles of their product range through design stages, and better satisfy stakeholder (including customer and staff) environmental expectations.
Mote that currently eight of the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals link to the focus and themes contained in ISO14001, making it very much ‘on trend’.
Virtually all large, and an increasing number of medium sized organisations have chosen to implement ISO14001:2015. This is market sector specific, with more take-up, for example, in the construction and manufacturing sectors due to both market and legislative demand.
In recent times the demand has been in sectors with less environmental impact, such as service areas, in order to demonstrate environmental credentials.
Increasingly these organisations are only using providers that have ISO14001:2015, and therefore it’s use has grown significantly.