Markets working to support sustainable development

ISO 14001: 2004

ISO 14001 is a “generic management system standard” that has a set of requirements for implementing an environmental management system (EMS).

It can be applied to any organisation, whatever its product or service, in any sector of activity, and whether it is a business, public administration or government department.

The EMS should enable an organisation to develop and implement a policy and objective that takes into account legal requirements, specific requirements of the organisation, and environmental aspects.

The environmental aspects to which ISO 14001:2004 applies are those that the organisation identifies which it can control and influence. Specific environmental performance criteria are not stated. 

Market coverage: 

The ISO Survey of Certifications 2012 reports that in total there were 285,844 companies certified to ISO 14001 in 167 countries in 2012. Regionally, these are dominated by companies from Europe (113,356) and the Far East (145,724). Further details are available through the links provided below.

Background information: 

ISO is a NGO located in Geneva, Switzerland, started in 1947 and has published over 18,000 standards. ISO is a network of national standards institutes from 163 countries across the world, with one member per country.

It claims to form a bridge between the public and private sectors, therefore enabling a consensus to be reached that satisfy the requirements of business and broader society. 

Funding source: 

Through membership fees, products and services

Notable information: 

Some companies such as Ford require ISO14001 certification throughout the company and of the companies who supply it.  There have been a number of academic articles on the spread of ISO14001, where it is happening and what the effects of it are.