EMAS (European ECO Regulation)
An effective environmental management system is considered a prerequisite for responsible economic activity. European Eco-Regulation EMAS (Eco-Management and Audit Scheme) provides your organization with a suitable basis for this, in combination with the environmental declaration that you have prepared on your own responsibility.
First published in 1993, the current version of the EU Regulation, EMAS III, has been valid since 2010. In addition to the continuous improvement of your organization’s environmental performance in accordance with ISO 14001, EMAS also requires the routine validation of your environmental declaration, standardized environmental indicators, and an environmental assessment by specially authorized environmental verifiers. Take advantage of our environmental verifiers’ expertise for an audit according to the EMAS rules. An EMAS registration is the perfect tool for you to demonstrate your environmental commitment to outsiders in a strong and transparent manner.
Your environmental declaration in report form will be published for the public to read – making your environmental performance and the environmental objectives of your organization transparent for all interested parties. The findings that result from the regular measurement of the environmental impact of your economic activity will allow you improve and sustain your environmental performance, and to reduce environmental risk. Another important advantage that goes above and beyond the environmental ones: you improve the trust of authorities, banks, and insurances in your company – as well as that of your customers and employees. And you achieve increased legal certainty in the environmental arena. The systematic and preventive thought and deed of your employees may also result in cost savings. At the same time, you sustainably improve your organization’s image – and thus, your competitive ability.
Since the scope of EMAS II was extended in 2001 from companies in the industrial sector to organizations of any type, EMAS III now extends the scope to organizations located outside of the EU. For small and medium-sized enterprises (SME), there is now also some relief regarding inspection intervals and validation of the environmental declaration.
As a preparation, you will first conduct your own review of all environmental aspects according to the rules of EMAS. Afterwards, you implement a suitable environmental management system on the basis of your results. After you have prepared your environmental declaration, our verifiers review the procedure for the environmental verification of your organization, and its implementation. Then your environmental declaration will be verified. If you were successful, you can be registered by the respective authorities. Inspection intervals will be specified according to your company’s size; they usually take place at three-year intervals.
The process starts with the client’s needs and expectations. DQS wants to learn about the client’s organization, its management system, size and types of operation. Together both parties will define objectives for the assessment and/or certification, including applicable standards and specifications.
DQS will provide a detailed offer for assessment and certification services, tailored to individual client needs, based on the information provided initially. A written contract will specify all relevant deliverables as well as applicable assessment and certification criteria.
A pre-audit can serve as initial performance or gap analysis, identifying strengths and areas for improvement. For larger assessment and certification projects a project planning meeting provides a valuable opportunity for the client to meet the lead assessor and develop a customized assessment plan for all functions and locations involved. Both services are optional.
The assessment procedure itself begins with review and evaluation of system documentation, goals, results of management review and internal audits. During this process, it will be determined whether the client’s management system is sufficiently developed and ready for certification. The assessor will explain findings and coordinate any required activities to prepare for the on-site system assessment.
The assigned auditor team will audit the client’s management system at the place of production or service delivery. Applying defined management system standards and specifications, the assessment team will evaluate the effectiveness of all functional areas as well as all management system processes, based upon observations, inspections, interviews, review of pertinent records, and other assessment techniques. The audit result, including all findings will be presented to the client during the closing meeting. Required action plans will be agreed upon as necessary.
The independent certification function of DQS will evaluate the audit process and its results, and decide independently about issuance of the certificate. The client receives an audit report, documenting the audit results. When all applicable requirements are fulfilled the client also receives the certificate.
Either semi-annually or at least once per year, there will be an on-site audit of the critical components of the management system. Improvement potential will be identified, with a focus on continual improvement and sustained effectiveness.
A management system certificate is valid for a limited period of time, frequently for a maximum of three years. At the end of this cycle, a re-audit will be carried out to ensure the ongoing fulfillment of all applicable requirements. Subject to this fulfillment, a new certificate will be issued.
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