Help Keep the World Green
Rezaee, Zabihollah, Journal of Accountancy
The ISO 14000 standards present a challenge for companies and a service opportunity for CPA firms.
As we approach the new millennium, concern about the environment is becoming a worldwide phenomenon. Environmental costs and obligations have grown substantially and will continue to grow as society becomes more conscious of its surroundings, environmental laws and regulations increase and corporations face increased pressure to be good environmental citizens. To address the emergence of an international "green movement," many countries have enacted legislation intended to hold organizations more accountable for their environmental obligations. Companies have responded by taking a proactive stance on voluntary initiatives.
The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) promulgated a series of standards called ISO 14000 that are intended to help businesses around the world voluntarily manage their environmental responsibilities and ensure that policies, procedures and practices conform with company environmental targets and objectives. The worldwide impact of these standards is expected to transcend those of the ISO 9000 quality standards. In fact, ISO 14000 may eventually become a requirement for obtaining ISO 9001 recertification.
Businesses of all sizes across all industries face the demanding high-stakes challenge of attaining ISO 14001 registration and certification. (ISO 14000 consists of several guideline standards and one compliance standard, labeled ISO 14001, which includes the rules companies register under to become certified.) Exhibit 1, page 59, describes the six ISO 14000 categories and the related standards. Like ISO 9000, ISO 14000 may someday become a prerequisite for competing in the global market while also helping to safeguard the earth's resources.
Exhibit 1: ISO Categories and Related Standards Category Standards 1. Environmental ISO 14001, which provides core requirements management systems for establishing and maintaining an EMS that (EMS) an external third party can certify or register ISO 14002, which provides guidelines on ISO 14001 for small- and medium-sized enterprises ISO 14004, which explains EMS and helps companies tailor it to their operations 2. Environmental ISO 14010 -- General methods on environmental auditing auditing ISO 14011 -- Audit procedures--Auditing of EMS ISO 14012 -- Qualification criteria for environmental auditors ISO 14013 -- Management of environmental audit programs ISO 14014 -- Initial reviews 3. Environmental ISO 14015- Environmental site assessments labeling ISO 14020 -- Environmental labels and declarations ISO 14021 -- Environmental labels and declarations; self-declared environmental claims--terms and definitions ISO 14024 -- Environmental labels and declarations--Environmental labeling Type I. ISO 14025 -- Environmental labels and declarations--Environmental labeling Type III 4. Performance ISO 14031 -- General guidelines on evaluation environmental performance evaluation ISO 14032 -- Case studies illustrating the use of ISO 14031 5. Life-cycle ISO 14040-- Life-cycle assessment--Principles assessment and framework ISO 14041 -- Environmental management in life-cycle assessment--Goal and scope definition and inventory …
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Publication information: Article title: Help Keep the World Green. Contributors: Rezaee, Zabihollah - Author. Journal title: Journal of Accountancy. Volume: 190. Issue: 5 Publication date: November 2000. Page number: 57. © 2009 American Institute of CPA's. COPYRIGHT 2000 Gale Group.
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