Regulator to pilot EMS+

15th April 2011

Related Topics

Related tags

  • Food and drink ,
  • Certification ,
  • Auditing



Sites with accredited certification to ISO 14001 might soon be able to use their EMS auditors to review their operations rather than be visited by Environment Agency inspectors.

Under the plans, being developed by the Environment Agency with strong support from BIS and Defra, third-party auditors will assess a site against a compliance protocol developed by the EA. The agency will then review the outcome. Sites that show good regulatory performance will have an alternative, much reduced inspection regime.

The aim is to reduce regulatory inspections of sites with a good compliance classification score and which are already subject to third-party auditing of their environmental management system (EMS). It should mean lower charges and fewer visits for sites taking part in the voluntary scheme.

The initiative, being branded as EMS+, will be piloted in the cement, food and drink, and waste sectors from the end of the summer, before an anticipated roll out in April 2012. The pilots will test the protocol and whether the perceived benefits of third-party review are realisable.

The government hopes EMS+ will enable the agency – which has seen its budget for permitting work cut 6% this year, and faces a potential further 16% reduction by 2014/15 – to focus its diminishing resources on poor performers. It also helps to meet the challenge set by BIS and Defra in the review of waste policies.

Martin Baxter, policy director at IEMA, believes the scheme will increase the attraction of 14001 certified environmental management systems and improve the quality of audits.

“An accredited EMS certificate will be the entry point to lower EA fees and charges. Companies may have to pay certification bodies more, but they will reap enhanced benefits from having an EMS,” he says. “And, because auditors will now be assessing how well a site is performing against its permit, the quality of audits should rise.”


Subscribe to IEMA's newsletters to receive timely articles, expert opinions, event announcements, and much more, directly in your inbox.

Transform articles

Latest environmental legislation update

Groundbreaking legislation on air and noise pollution and measures to tackle growing concerns over disposable vapes provide the focus for Neil Howe’s environmental legislation update

6th June 2024

Read more

One in five UK food businesses are not prepared for EU Deforestation Regulation (EUDR) coming into force in December, a new survey has uncovered.

16th May 2024

Read more

Regulatory gaps between the EU and UK are beginning to appear, warns Neil Howe in this edition’s environmental legislation round-up

4th April 2024

Read more

Dr Julie Riggs issues a call to arms to tackle a modern-day human tragedy

15th March 2024

Read more

The UK’s new biodiversity net gain (BNG) requirements could create 15,000 hectares of woodlands, heath, grasslands, and wetlands and absorb 650,000 tonnes of carbon each year.

13th March 2024

Read more

Campaign group Wild Justice has accused the UK government of trying to relax pollution rules for housebuilders “through the backdoor”.

14th February 2024

Read more

Digital tracking, packaging data delays and new collections provide a waste focus for this edition’s environmental round-up by legislation expert Neil Howe

28th November 2023

Read more

Media enquires

Looking for an expert to speak at an event or comment on an item in the news?

Find an expert

IEMA Cookie Notice

Clicking the ‘Accept all’ button means you are accepting analytics and third-party cookies. Our website uses necessary cookies which are required in order to make our website work. In addition to these, we use analytics and third-party cookies to optimise site functionality and give you the best possible experience. To control which cookies are set, click ‘Settings’. To learn more about cookies, how we use them on our website and how to change your cookie settings please view our cookie policy.

Manage cookie settings

Our use of cookies

You can learn more detailed information in our cookie policy.

Some cookies are essential, but non-essential cookies help us to improve the experience on our site by providing insights into how the site is being used. To maintain privacy management, this relies on cookie identifiers. Resetting or deleting your browser cookies will reset these preferences.

Essential cookies

These are cookies that are required for the operation of our website. They include, for example, cookies that enable you to log into secure areas of our website.

Analytics cookies

These cookies allow us to recognise and count the number of visitors to our website and to see how visitors move around our website when they are using it. This helps us to improve the way our website works.

Advertising cookies

These cookies allow us to tailor advertising to you based on your interests. If you do not accept these cookies, you will still see adverts, but these will be more generic.

Save and close