Environmental management in companies slows down climate change

Environmental management is part of every business model today, not only in corporate companies – environmental management is even a success factor for small and medium-sized enterprises. It reduces the risks of environmental damages. Companies that consistently align their organisation and production to environmental protection slow down climate change and reduce their liability risks.

ISO 14001 certification

ISO 14001 certification is an established standard for effective environmental management system...

Environmental Management Officer

An environmental management officer is not mandatory for companies, but it is important for compliance with legal...

Environmental management system

With systematic environmental management, companies make a contribution to climate protection. If you in your organization...

Reduce your company’s carbon footprint

With integrated environmental management you support your employees in using raw materials, energy and water more efficiently and in reducing waste and wastewater. Often companies also reduce their costs and emissions in the process. With an Environmental Management System you also establish a continuous improvement process in your company. You systematically plan, organise, control and optimise your processes along the value chain.

Maybe you’re wondering: “How can I reduce my company’s carbon footprint and contribute to climate protection?”

Our response: With environmental management consulting by Memex Consulting GmbH your company makes a contribution to environmental protection. And that puts the brakes on climate change.

Definition: what does environmental management mean?

Environmental management is an integral part of corporate governance. It is on the same level as functional management tasks. Environmental management is a cross-sectional function that records the environmental impacts of operational activities along the entire value chain. To do this, the management ideally appoints an Environmental Management Officer. His task is the environmental management consultancy for all specialist departments and the management. He supports the operations in making all processes, products and management decisions and the employee behaviour environmentally sustainable. He is improving his company’s carbon footprint through a continuous monitoring process.

For more information on the tasks of environmental management and on the role and tools read the article on Environmental Management Officers.

What does environmental management include?

For systematic environmental management the Environmental Management Officer analyses strengths and weaknesses as well as opportunities and risks of his company under aspects of environmental protection against the background of climate change. In a narrower sense, his topics include:

  • Resource use, consumption and recycling

     

  • Impact of products over their lifetime to recycling

     

  • Energy types, flows and consumption in production, logistics and administration

     

  • the total greenhouse gas emissions by the company

     

  • environmental impacts (air, soil, water) including biodiversity

     

  • waste and wastewater.

In addition, the tasks of the Environmental Management Officer include the regular monitoring of the application of and compliance with laws and official requirements. environmental management also deals with the concerns of environmental protection organisations and other stakeholders.

Which environmental organisations are there?

In Germany, international, national and regional environmental protection organisations work on every topic of environmental protection and climate change. Among the best known are Bund Umwelt- und Naturschutz Deutschland (BUND), Naturfreunde, Naturschutzbund Deutschland (NABU) and Deutsche Umwelthilfe. Internationally known organisations such as the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and Greenpeace as well as Robin Wood are also active in this country. Many organisations have strong regional groups. They are regionally committed to environmental, air, water and soil protection, biodiversity and the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions to limit climate change. They observe and analyse the impact of entrepreneurial activities on the environment in their region.

Why is environmental management so important in companies?

Environmental protection organisations have repeatedly uncovered large and small environmental scandals in the past. As a result, the reported companies suffered not only economic but also reputational damage. In recent years, environmental protection laws and official regulations on the use of the environment by companies have also become increasingly stringent – in 1980 the environmental criminal law was incorporated into the Criminal Code as a separate offence. New and revised laws on water, soil, nature and emission protection as well as the Chemicals Act, the Federal Nature Conservation Act and laws on plant and animal protection have ensured that ever tighter limits have been placed on entrepreneurial activity. Companies that violate environmental protection laws face high liability risks that can threaten their economic existence. Moreover, the environmental management in companies offers many benefits:

Because with a systematic environmental management …

  • your company uses enregy and resources more efficiently,

     

  • win over customers, suppliers and employees,

     

  • reduce your company’s carbon footprint,

     

  • minimise the environmental risks of your production,

     

  • reduce liability risks for the management,

     

  • save energy and raw material costs, and

     

  • systematically plan the way to climate neutrality for your company.

Are you looking for an environmental management consultancy for your company? Arrange a free initial consultation with Memex Consulting GmbH now.

Let’s talk about your company’s carbon footprint.

Which Environmental Management Systems are there?

An Environmental Management System is like a Quality Management System always a single solution because each company is unique and differs in its risks of environmental damage. However, there is more than one environmental management standard that companies can use as a reference to set up their individual Environmental Management System:

  1. Eco Management and Audit Scheme (EMAS)

     

  2. Environmental Management System according to ISO 14001

     

  3. Ecostep according to the standard series ISO 9000 and ISO 14001; quality management and environmental management for small and medium-sized companies.

What environmental management certifications are there?

In all three series of standards, companies can obtain certification of their environmental management. For this purpose, there are state-approved certification bodies such as the Technical Inspection Associations (TÜV) as well as other testing organisations. Before applying for certification, companies should seek environmental management advice. Especially the environmental management standard ISO 14001 is a complex set of standards that has a deep impact on the company’s organisation.

What is environmental management according to ISO 14001?

The International Standards Organisation (ISO) first published ISO 14001 in 1996 together with national standards institutions such as the European Committee for Standardisation (EN) and the German Institute for Standardisation (DIN). It defines the globally recognised minimum requirements that environmental management in companies must meet.

Which requirements do I have to fulfil according to ISO 14001?

The requirements for environmental management according to ISO 14001 are defined in the standard. According to this, companies must document an environmental policy for all areas of the company in writing and commit employees to it. In this policy, the management must specify concrete goals and measures on how to improve the environmental impact of the entire organisation through continuous monitoring. It is important to include not only the company’s own operations but also the entire context of the company including suppliers, customers, authorities and so-called interested parties (stakeholders).

Requirements for an environmental management certificate

The ISO 14001 environmental management standard consists of ten sections and eight of these specifically describe the requirements that environmental management must fulfil for certification. All internal and external aspects of a company must be taken into account. Standard-compliant handling instructions are to be described in a documentation. These are in particular:

  1. Corporate context: Listing of all internal, external and environmental aspects of the company and how they currently affect the environment.

     

  2. Managers: Role description with clear responsibilities for the responsible managers and the duty to define the environmental goals of their areas

     

  3. Planning: Identification of strengths and weaknesses, opportunities and threats and which measures can be used to achieve the goals

     

  4. Resources: Developing task lists and schedules as well as providing budget and monitoring resource efficiency during implementation

     

  5. Operational environmental protection: Analysis of all products and services over their complete life cycle; contingency plans for conceivable environmental hazards

     

  6. Performance measurement: Development of key figures with which target achievement can be measured in the future

     

  7. Checks: Establishment of standards for the regular review of conformity to the standard and identification of new weak points

     

  8. Improvements: Elimination of newly identified risks and optimisation of the Environmental Management System

Find out more about environmental management and what it means for your company in our article on ISO 14001 certification.

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