Environmental Management Systems
NSSGA encourages its members to adopt and implement an Environmental Management System (EMS) program to meet its environmental requirements and improve its overall environmental performance.
EPA describes its position on EMSs: "EPA supports and will help promote the development and use of EMSs, including those based on the ISO 14001 standard, that help an organization achieve its environmental obligations and broader environmental performance goals."
In response, NSSGA developed an EPA Approved EMS template for use by its members. The template was created to provide producer members with a written framework that can be used in sections or used in its entirety to develop a voluntary EMS program. While the EMS template follows the general guidelines of ISO 14001, the NSSGA Template takes the form of modules so that each producer member can choose the individual modules and adapt them, as appropriate, to best fit their company's needs and stated environmental goals and principles. NSSGA’s EMS model uses a plan-do-check-act approach, similar to quality management principles, that focuses on continual improvement. This approach ensures that environmental matters are systematically identified, controlled and monitored.
An EMS is a set of management tools and principles designed to guide the allocation of resources, assignment of responsibilities and ongoing evaluation of practices, procedures and processes that a company needs to integrate environmental concerns into its daily business practices. The EMS developed and outlined by the International Standards Organization (ISO) in their standard ISO 14001 is one such example. The ISO 14001 EMS provides a widely recognized set of principles and standards for integrating environmental management into quality control and other business activities.
What an EMS Can Do for You
- An EMS is a continual cycle of planning, implementing, reviewing and improving the processes and actions that an organization undertakes to meet its environmental obligations.
- EMS models are based on the "Plan, Do, Check, Act" model which endorses the concept of continual improvement.
- NSSGA's EMS is one approach that NSSGA members might want to consider when formulating and developing an effective and comprehensive environmental management program for their operations.
NSSGA’s EMS Templates Will Show The User
- Improve environmental performance
- Enhance compliance
- Prevent pollution and conserve resources
- Reduce/mitigate risks
- Increase efficiency/reduce costs
- Enhance public image with regulators, public, lenders, investors
- Achieve/improve employee awareness of environmental issues and responsibilities
- Qualify the site for recognition/incentive programs such as EPA’s Performance Track national environmental recognition program
- How to work with the 13 modules of the NSSGA EMS Template
- How to use the Template as a guide to implementing an EMS within your organization
- How to develop an Environmental Policy and a formal analysis to gauge your organization’s current environmental programs
- How to identify the environmental aspects of the activities and services of an organization, determine which are potentially significant environmental impacts; and be able to establish environmental objectives and targets and management plans for achieving them
- How to implement necessary training, establish appropriate operational controls, and measure and monitor the activities associated with the significant environmental aspects
- How to determine methods for identifying and having access to environmental legal requirements applicable to your operations and be aware of the specific environmental laws and regulations applicable to aggregate operations
- How to implement the EMS elements of communication, documentation, document control, record keeping, and emergency preparedness and response; and
- How to understand the compliance evaluation, EMS audit and management review elements
EMS Documents and Links of Interest
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