New for your ISO 14001 EMS - Context of the Organization

Wednesday, 24 February 2016
ASR Editor
5.0/5 rating (2 votes)
iso 14001 registrar context of the organizationOne of the objectives of ISO 14001:2015 is the pulling together of an organization's environmental internal issues, external issues and interested parties that make up the firm's business environment or the Context of the Organization.

In the past, top management was never required to define the firm's business environment as it related to internal and external issues or any interested parties.

Internal issues might be air quality, waste hauling and its costs. External issues might include customers and legal requirements. Interested parties could be the organization's adjoining neighbors, and various local, state, federal environmental agencies. Customers also are interested parties as a result of their requirements for certain chemical use and other materials.

Through the identification of the Context of the Organization, top management (4.1 and 4.2) can focus on being more environmentally friendly and ensure that the organization remains in compliance with all regulations.

Top management's focus does not require documentation; however, most organizations will document the internal and external issues plus interested parties in the environment.
Section 4.3 is aimed at defining the EMS scope as it relates to the business operation. This scope could include additional items to the organization's boundaries. An example might be air quality issues in the surrounding area of the facility, if important.

Section 4.4 defines in general terms an organization's EMS system. This would include necessary processes for the organization to be successful. Some processes will be documented and others undocumented.

Context of the Organization is the first auditable part of ISO 14001:2015 and may be audited toward the beginning the EMS audit. The auditor will be looking for and documenting high level issues and available documentation that demonstrates effective implementation of an organization's EMS system.

Properly identifying Context of the Organization will assist in the building of a complete EMS system that meets top management's needs.

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EMS | Environmental Management | ISO 14001

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