Revised ISO14001 draft moves forward

12th February 2015


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Author

Mark Allen

The new version of ISO14001 remains on track to be published by September after the latest meeting of the group working on the revision.

The group met in Tokyo and Martin Baxter, director of policy and external engagement at IEMA, who attended the meeting as part of the UK delegation, says it has addressed around half the comments made following consultation on the DIS (draft international standard), which ended in October 2014.

He reports that changes have been made to the clause dealing with “risk and opportunities”. Risk is defined in terms of the effect of uncertainty, but the way it is used in the text always implies that risk has a negative consequence, he said. While the DIS used the phrase “risk associated with threats and opportunities”, it has reverted to “risks and opportunities” and defined this term in a more understandable way.

“This clause has been quite a challenge for the working group. The new version works much better and picks up on IEMA members’ feedback during workshops,” Baxter said.

The working group has also dealt with a disagreement over the term “compliance obligations” and how this is used in the standard. The debate centred around the implied meaning of the term “conform with compliance obligations” in the draft. The definition in the DIS will be retained, according to Baxter.

“Although the more contentious work has been done, there’s a lot more to do. Another meeting will be held at the end of April in London. While this isn’t ideal, it isn’t really a surprise. We should still be on track for publication in September,” he said.

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