EMAS is the world's most demanding system for sustainable environmental management. The objective of an EMAS-based environmental management system is the continuous improvement of environmental performance in companies by means of a comprehensive management claim beyond ISO 14001.
The EMAS regulation contains further binding elements in relation to the commercial environmental management standard ISO 14001:2015. Therefore, successful validation according to EMAS also includes certification according to ISO 14001.
In order to verify EMAS requirements and to validate the environmental statement of a site or organization, the following key aspects are evaluated.
• Definition and implementation of environmental policy
• successfully conducting an environmental audit
• Environment Program
• Compliance with relevant permit requirements and environmental regulations
• successful establishment of an environmental management system
• Presentation of a compliant environmental statement
• Proof of continuous improvement of environmental performance
An environmental verifier checks the reliability, plausibility and conformity of the environmentally relevant core indicators. If an environmental verifier has validated an environmental statement, the organization can apply to the relevant Chamber of Commerce for Registration.
EMAS is a voluntary European Union instrument that helps businesses and organizations of all sizes and industries to continuously improve their environmental performance. (Quote from emas website http://www.emas.de/home/)
EMAS is a management system that sets high environmental standards. It exceeds the requirements of ISO 14001. In principle, environmental management systems pursue the goal of "end-of-pipe" procedures, which fundamentally eliminate harmful mechanisms and their effects on the environment.
Environmental management systems provide process mechanisms for evaluating, managing and managing environmental aspects throughout the cycle, from raw material sourcing to manufacturing, use and the required measures at the end of use of a product or service, and environmental performance to improve.
An environmental management system according to the EC regulation 1221: 2009 (EMAS regulation) contains as a management core the ISO 14001 mechanisms. The new ISO 14001: 2015 released in September 2015 has as a major change the new HLS, high level structure, which allows a simpler and consistent combination of other ISO systems. In addition, a life-cycle view of the products and services as well as the explicit responsibility of the management level for the management system have been defined. This has always existed at EMAS.
In particular, the EMAS regulation includes legal regulations on the approval and supervision of environmental verifiers as well as the regulations for publication and registration of organizations seeking EMAS certification. Furthermore, a regulatory inquiry into compliance with legislation as a prerequisite for registration contributes to the particular credibility of EMAS registered companies.
Since an EMAS certification contains all the requirements of ISO 14001, the validation of an environmental verifier and the EMAS registration will also be accompanied by a certificate of conformity with ISO 14001. An environmental verifier is entitled to issue a certificate according to ISO 14001.
Even with the new ISO 14001: 2015, EMAS still surpasses the commercial requirements of ISO 14001: 2015 as state premium version.
Advantages of the EMAS Environmental Management System:
- Sustainable stability of operational environmental protection through the binding participation of all employees
- Proof of compliance with laws and regulations, legal compliance by validation of the environmental verifier
- Privileges in approval procedures and savings through benefits on application
- Simplified reporting obligations for BImSchG, accident or WHG facilities (EMAS privilege)
- More intensive involvement of involved operational units, e.g. Environmental cost account UKoRe
- Prevention of operational risks
- Image gain, competitive advantages, sustainable credibility
An EMAS certification includes an ISO 14001 certification. If your company already has ISO 14001 certification, it can be integrated into EMAS certification. However, this does not mean that an accredited verifier will accept third-party ISO 14001 certification without reservation. Environmental verifiers are much more qualified environmental auditors and therefore assess the external ISO 14001 audits and findings of the certification company.
Procedure of an EMAS registration
The first step to EMAS registration is the determination of the current state and the mapping of the future goals. With the implementation of an environmental management system (ISO 14001: 2015), the distribution of responsibilities, the development of core indicators for e.g. Energy and water consumption and waste generation and concrete process controls for the flow control. The internal environmental audit (the first environmental audit) maps the effectiveness of the system and defines concrete, comprehensible and measurable goals.
The objectives and measures derived from the first environmental audit (and later their achievement of objectives) are documented in an environmental statement, which must be validated by an environmental verifier. A special feature of the EMAS requirement is that compliance with all relevant environmental legislation must be checked and confirmed
If the assessment of the environmental management system is successful and the environmental statement valid, the registration application is submitted to the responsible registration office. They communicate with the responsible environmental authority about any violations and register the company in the EMAS register. Now the registered company is allowed to use the EMAS logo.
conformity inspection body
conformity assessment body
Accredited European Certification