The energy industry plays a critical role in global economic development and growth, but it also has significant environmental impacts. Energy production and consumption contribute to greenhouse gas emissions, air pollution, and other environmental issues. With the growing emphasis on sustainability and environmental responsibility, it has become increasingly important for the energy industry to adopt more sustainable practices and reduce its environmental footprint.
In this article, we'll explore why ISO 14001 is essential for sustainability in the energy industry, and how it can help companies manage their environmental impacts and risks, comply with regulations, and enhance their reputation.
The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) creates globally recognized standards that enable businesses and organizations to operate in accordance with established Best Practices. ISO 14001 is its Environment Management System (EMS) standard that enables organizations to implement a framework to establish an effective EMS.
An environmental management system provides businesses with an accurate way of monitoring and measuring its environmental impact. As sustainability becomes a key factor for stakeholders and customers and environmental regulation increases, it’s vital that businesses implement effective and transparent environmental management systems and ISO 14001 certification empowers organizations to do this in line with internationally recognized standards.
An environmental management system ISO 14001 certification can benefit companies across a wide range of sectors but energy companies, in particular, can benefit from achieving ISO 14001 certification.
As the energy industry is a high-emitting sector, it is under increasing pressure to reduce its environmental impact. Of course, effective reductions can only be achieved once a company is accurately measuring and recording its baseline environmental impact.
By undertaking the ISO certification process and achieving ISO 14001 compliance, energy companies can implement an effective environmental management system that forms the basis of their sustainability strategy.
ISO quality certification offers a variety of benefits and companies can reap a range of rewards by achieving ISO 14001 certification, including:
Environmental legislation is increasing, and companies are expected to adhere to a variety of incoming regulations, such as the Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD). In order to report accurate environmental information, such as a company’s emissions, accurate monitoring must be in place. By achieving ISO 14001 certification, organizations can implement an effective and cost-efficient environmental management system that requires them to both identify and understand that they comply with relevant legal regulations.
As public interest surrounding sustainability continues to grow, stakeholders and investors are placing increasing emphasis on ESG – environmental, social and governance – risks and opportunities. To attract new investments and retain existing stakeholders, therefore, companies must be transparent about their ESG performance and make improvements where possible.
An ISO 14001 compliant environmental management system enables businesses to do just that. While the data and insights gained via an ISO 14001 compliant EMS are invaluable, the fact that an organization is ISO 14001 certified gives investors and stakeholders confidence in the company’s commitment to ESG and, therefore, makes it easier to attract and retain investments.
While many companies want to reduce their environmental impact, concerns regarding costs have traditionally been a barrier to success. However, implementing an effective EMS and reducing your carbon footprint can actually help to reduce costs.
As you use your environmental management system to reduce emissions, for example, you may find that your energy consumption decreases and costs fall accordingly. Similarly, you may begin maximizing energy efficiency via new technologies, such as waste heat recovery, that enables you to generate clean, on-site energy, thus further reducing your energy bills.
Waste reduction is a critical element of ISO 14001 and this, in itself, can lead directly to cost reductions too. By assessing your current operations and finding ways to minimize your environmental impact, you’ll find that these changes can deliver in-house operational and financial benefits, as well as improving your company’s environmental performance.
Both consumers and businesses now have sustainability at the forefront of their minds when making a purchase, so it’s vital that companies prioritize their environmental impact if they want to retain their share of the market and grow their business.
Whether you’re a B2C or B2B organization, achieving ISO 14001 certification will enhance your brand’s reputation and signify your commitment to building a sustainable future.
Before your company bids for upcoming contracts or submits tenders, you’ll need to meet certain eligibility criteria and many organizations now state that businesses must be ISO 14001 certified to partner with them.
Due to this, you could miss out on lucrative opportunities if you don’t have the ISO 14001 certification. Conversely, showing that you are ISO 14001 certified will enable your business to enjoy a wider range of global opportunities and give your company a competitive advantage.
As environmental awareness grows, ISO 14001 certification is becoming a must-have for businesses, but how do you go about getting certified and what does the ISO certification process involve?
At first glance, the demands of ISO 14001 may seem onerous, but the rewards are certainly worth the effort involved. Although ISO 14001 is not prescriptive, it does require you to consider a variety of factors when implementing an EMS, such as Leadership, Context, Risks, Support and Operations.
While the 44-page ISO 14001 document contains a wealth of information and guidance, many companies choose to seek guidance from external consultants to assist them in implementing an ISO 14001 compliant environmental management system.
As well as accelerating the process of implementation, this can increase your chances of obtaining the ISO 14001 certification at the first attempt and, therefore, will enable you to achieve ISO 14001 certification following your audit.
To find out more about the ISO 14001 certification or to discover how QAS International can help your business to achieve ISO 14001, contact our team now on 020 3198 9788.