The recent revision to the newly published international Environmental Management System (EMS) standard, ISO 14001:2015, saw the introduction of the life cycle perspective as a result of Annex A which provides guidance on the interpretation of the standard.
Guidance from Annex A states that “thinking carefully about the life cycle stages” is sufficient. As some of the most significant impacts of a product or service can occur during the transport, delivery or use and end-of-life stages of the life cycle, consideration and application of the life cycle perspective will allow organisations to identify, prevent and mitigate against high risk impacts during each stage.
Discussing the impact on the ISO 14001:2015 assessment process, LRQA System and Governance Manager, Steve Williams said; ‘Whilst the incorporation of the life cycle perspective is new to ISO 14001:2015, the standard isn’t calling for a full analysis. Assessors will be looking to see that an organisation has developed their EMS to address all of the potential environmental risks throughout the life cycle of their product or service.’
Further guidance on the life cycle perspective is contained within the recently published ISO 14004:2016 ‘Environmental management systems – General guidelines on implementation’ and on the ISO/TC 207/SC1 website.
Through our extensive range of training and assessment services, LRQA is helping organisations worldwide transition to the new and revised ISO standards