ISO 14001:2004 Requirements Summary

I prepared this summary of the ISO 14001:2004 requirements for my clients. See the actual standard for a complete description of the requirements.

4.1 General Requirements

  • Establish, document, and implement environmental system
  • Maintain and continually improve the environmental system
  • Determine how system will meet requirements of standard
  • Document scope of the environmental management system

4.2 Environmental Policy

  • Define and document the environmental policy
  • Ensure appropriate for activities, products, and services
  • Commit to pollution prevention and continually improvement
  • Include compliance with legal and other requirements
  • Provide framework for environmental objectives and targets
  • Communicate to all working for or on behalf of organization
  • Make environmental policy available to public

4.3 Planning
4.3.1 Environmental Aspects

  • Implement procedure to identify environmental aspects
  • Identify aspects of activities, products, and services
  • Include aspects within the defined scope of system
  • Consider aspects that can control or can influence
  • Take into account planned or new developments
  • Determine aspects with significant impact on environment
  • Document aspects and impacts and keep up to date
  • Ensure significant aspects are taken into account in system

4.3.2 Legal and Other Requirements

  • Implement procedure to identify and access legal requirements
  • Determine how requirements apply to environmental aspects
  • Ensure requirements are considered in environmental system

4.3.3 Objectives, Targets, and Programs

  • Document environmental objectives and targets
  • Establish measurable targets consistent with policy
  • Commit to compliance with legal and other requirements
  • Commit to pollution prevention and continually improvement
  • Take into account legal requirements and significant aspects
  • Consider technology options and views of interested parties
  • Address financial, operational, and business requirements
  • Implement a program to achieve objectives and targets
  • Designate responsibility at relevant functions and levels
  • Include means and timeframe for achieving the targets

4.4 Implementation and Operation
4.4.1 Resources, Roles, Responsibility, and Authority

  • Ensure availability of resources for environmental system
  • Include human resources and specialized skills
  • Address infrastructure, technology, and finances
  • Document and communicate responsibilities and authorities
  • Appoint management representative with following duties
  • Ensure system is maintained according to standard
  • Report to top management on performance of system
  • Include recommendations for improvement

4.4.2 Competence, Training, and Awareness

  • Ensure persons with environmental tasks are competent
  • Judge competency based on education, training, or experience
  • Keep records of education, training, and experience
  • Identify training needs based on system and aspects
  • Provide training, or other actions, and keep records
  • Implement procedure for awareness of following factors
  • Stress importance of conformity to policies and procedures
  • Point out significant aspects and actual or potential impacts
  • Identify environmental benefits of improved personal performance
  • Clarify roles and responsibilities for conformity to requirements
  • Identify potential consequences of departure from procedures

4.4.3 Communication

  • Implement procedure for internal communication
  • Consider at relevant levels and functions of organization
  • Implement procedure for external communication
  • Consider receiving, documenting, and responding
  • Decide if will communicate externally on significant aspects
  • Document this decision on external communication
  • Implement method for external communication, if needed

4.4.4 Documentation

  • Document environmental policy, objectives, and targets
  • Describe scope of environmental management system
  • Describe main system elements and their interaction
  • Refer to related documents for these main elements
  • Include documents and records required by standard
  • Include documentation needed for effective processes

4.4.5 Control of Documents

  • Control documents needed for system or standard
  • Implement procedure to control these documents
  • Approve documents for adequacy prior to issue
  • Review and update as necessary and re-approve
  • Identify document changes and revision status
  • Ensure documents are available at points of use
  • Keep documents legible and readily identifiable
  • Identify and control distribution of external documents
  • Prevent unintended use of obsolete documents
  • Apply suitable identification if documents retained

4.4.6 Operational Control

  • Identify and plan operations with significant aspects
  • Plan consistent with policy, objectives, and targets
  • Ensure carried out under specified conditions
  • Implement documented procedures as needed
  • Use where their absence could lead to deviations
  • Stipulate the operating criteria in the procedures
  • Implement procedures related to environmental aspects
  • Communicate procedures to suppliers and subcontractors

4.4.7 Emergency Preparedness and Response

  • Identify potential emergencies and accidents
  • Implement procedure on how to respond to them
  • Respond to actual emergencies and accidents
  • Prevent or mitigate adverse environmental impacts
  • Review procedures periodically and revise as needed
  • Test procedures periodically, where practical

4.5 Checking
4.5.1 Monitoring and Measurement

  • Implement procedure to monitor and measure operations
  • Monitor key characteristics that have significant impact
  • Document data on performance, conformity, and controls
  • Judge conformity to environmental objectives and targets
  • Maintain and use calibrated or verified equipment
  • Keep records of monitoring and measurement equipment

4.5.2 Evaluation of Compliance

  • Evaluate compliance with legal requirements
  • Implement procedure for periodic evaluations
  • Keep records of results of periodic evaluations

  • Evaluate compliance with other requirements
  • Consider establishing a separate evaluation procedure
  • Consider combining with evaluation of legal compliance
  • Keep records of results of periodic evaluations

4.5.3 Nonconformity, Corrective Action, and Preventive Action 

  • Implement procedure for dealing with nonconformities
  • Include procedure for corrective and preventive action
  • Identify and correct nonconformities
  • Take actions to mitigate environmental impacts
  • Investigate nonconformities and determine causes
  • Take actions to avoid their recurrence
  • Evaluate need for actions to prevent nonconformities
  • Implement actions to avoid their occurrence
  • Record results of corrective and preventive actions
  • Review effectiveness of the actions taken
  • Act based on problem magnitude and environmental impact
  • Ensure changes are made to system documentation

 4.5.4 Control of Records

  • Maintain records as evidence of conformity
  • Use records to demonstrate achieved results
  • Implement procedure for control of records
  • Identify, store, and protect the records
  • Keep legible, identifiable, and traceable
  • Retrieve, retain, and dispose of records

 4.5.5 Internal Audit

  • Ensure internal audits are held at planned intervals
  • Determine if system conforms to requirements
  • Determine if system implemented and maintained
  • Plan audit program based on areas and prior audits
  • Implement procedure that addresses responsibilities
  • Cover planning, conducting, reporting, and recording
  • Determine criteria, scope, frequency, and methods
  • Ensure auditors and audits are impartial and objective

 4.6 Management Review

  • Review environmental system at planned intervals
  • Ensure its suitability, adequacy, and effectiveness
  • Include assessment of improvement opportunities
  • Assess need for system changes, including targets
  • Include results of audits and compliance evaluations
  • Cover external communications and any complaints
  • Examine environmental performance of organization
  • Include the extent to which targets have been met
  • Review status of corrective and preventive actions
  • Address follow-up actions from previous reviews
  • Consider changing circumstances related to aspects
  • Evaluate recommendations for improvement
  • Keep records of management reviews
  • Include decisions and actions in records