At the core of the standard are the first three clauses that deal with the terms and definitions, the scope of the standard, and the standard's terms and definitions. There are no requirements in these three clauses but they do provide a deeper understanding of the intent and the terminology used throughout the standard.
There are then a further seven clauses, which do contain requirements.
The standard’s format is based on Annex SL, the current high-level structure which is a common framework for all ISO management systems.
Clauses 4 to 7, the 'requirements' of ISO 14001, are divided into sub-clauses covering the specific requirements that any business needs to set up and manage their environmental management system.
The PDCA cycle is recognized by ISO as an approved management methodology and is compulsory within the scope of ISO 14001.
All of the ISO 14001 clauses are fully-documented and explained in our Environmental Management System Template (EMS).
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Updated: 26th February 2022
Author: Richard Keen
Richard is our Compliance Director, responsible for content & product development.
But most importantly he is ISO's biggest fanboy and a true evangelist of the standards.
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