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What is an EMS?

ISO 14001
The requirements identified on this page are derived from the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) 14001 standard for environmental management systems. Additional information on this standard can be obtained from their Website at www.iso.org/iso/home.htm Exit EPA Click for Disclaimer

An environmental management system (EMS) is that part of an organization's overall management system that incorporates all facets of its environmental program, which is then focused on the identification of significant environmental interactions and the mitigation of the negative consequences associated with them.  In doing so, the EMS provides a structured framework for organizations to build mission capability by:

In general, an EMS:

The most commonly used framework for an EMS is the ISO 14001 standard developed by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO).

The ISO 14001 standard is organized around four main phases or stages that form a continuous “Plan – Do – Check – Act” cycle for improvement of the system, as described below and shown in Figure 1.

1. Planning Environmental Activities (Plan Phase)

2. Implementation and Operation (Do Phase)

3. Monitoring and Evaluation (Check Phase)

4. Management Review and Action (Act Phase)

Additional information about the ISO 14001 EMS framework and how to implement an EMS in your organization can be found on the International Organization for Standardization Website.


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