Terms and Definitions of EPA Region 7's Environmental Management System
There are a number of terms and phrases used in the context of an environmental management system (EMS) that need to be defined to ensure that everyone choosing to participate in the system is working from a common perspective. These terms include familiar words, such as “document” and “record,” that take on very specific meanings in the context of an EMS. They also include words like “aspect” that may seem unusual to those unfamiliar with EMS's. Phrases used to describe parts of an EMS, such as "environmental management programs" and "other requirements," must also be defined to ensure they are completely understood.
Region 7 has compiled a list of definitions for common terms used within the context of our EMS, and Safety and Health Management System (SHMS) that can be viewed and/or downloaded from this site. People who are unfamiliar with EMS's may want to print a copy of the list and use it as a reference while viewing the rest of this site.