ISO 14001 is an international voluntary standard that specifies the minimum elements for an environmental management system. It was published in 1996 by the International Organization for Standardization and is being taken up by organizations throughout the world at varying speeds. ISO 14001 helps organizations to implement environmental management System, by adopting an EMS; organizations can minimize the harmful effect on the environment due to its activities. It will also help to conform to applicable regulatory requirements, and to achieve continual improvement of its environmental performance.
Like ISO 9001, ISO 14001 is also a generic standard, means the same standard can be applied for any organization large, small or medium, whatever the product services, or industry sector, public or private or governmental departments.
This International Standard is based on the methodology known as Plan-Do-Check-Act (PDCA). The standard requires the organization to establish an appropriate Environmental policy and identify the environmental aspect arising from its past, existing or planned activities in order to determine the environmental impact and its significance. Identification of applicable legal requirements and other requirements and identify the priorities and setting appropriate environmental objectives and targets, establishing structured programs to implement policy and achieving objectives and meet targets, Facilitate planning, control monitoring, preventive and corrective actions, auditing and review for continual performance improvement.