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EMAS - Performance, Credibility, Transparency

Eco-label Environmental Compliance Assistance Program Green Public Procurement

Frequently Asked Questions

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1. Introduction to EMAS

Question 1: What is EMAS?
Question 2: What are the key features of EMAS?
Question 3: What is the history of EMAS?
Question 4: Where can I find the latest EMAS Regulation?
Question 5: How does EMAS fit into the wider sustainable development approach of the European Union?
Question 6: Where can I find EMAS statistics?

Question 1: Why should my organisation participate in EMAS?
Question 2: What are the benefits of EMAS?
Question 3: What are the benefits of EMAS for small or medium-sized enterprises (SMEs)?
Question 4: Does EMAS distinguish between organisations making more/less improvement to their environmental performace?
Question 5: What are the costs of EMAS?

Question 1: Which organisations can participate in EMAS?
Question 2: What is the geographical scope of EMAS?
Question 3: What is the definition of an ‘organisation’?
Question 4: What is the definition of ‘small organisations’?
Question 5: What is the difference between a site and an organisation?

Question 1: Why should my organisation move from another Envirnomental Management System to EMAS?
Question 2: Can non-formal Environmental Management Systems or parts thereof be recognized as complying with corresponding requirements of EMAS?
Question 3: How to move from another Environmental Management System to EMAS?
Question 4: Which Environmental Management Systems aside from EN ISO 14001 are compatible with EMAS?

Question 1: What are the different steps to implementing EMAS?
Question 2: How must an organisation show legal compliance?
Question 3: Are there any penalties for non-compliance with EMAS?
Question 4: Who can take advantage of the single corporate registration?
Question 5: Who can take advantage of the cluster approach?
Question 6: What are the NACE codes?

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Question 1: What are the revised audit cycles for small organisations?
Question 2: Is a site visit obligatory as part of the renewal of EMAS registration in intervening years?

Question 1: Which information needs to be included in the environmental statement?
Question 2: What are environmental core indicators?

Question 1: What are the conditions for using the EMAS logo?
Question 2: Are there any penalties for the misuse of the EMAS logo?

Question 1: What are sectoral reference documents?
Question 2: What is the role of EU Member States and the European Commission in order to support EMAS?
Question 3: Whom should my organisation contact if we want to register to EMAS?
Question 4: What is the EMAS Helpdesk?
Question 5: What are the tasks of the Regulatory Committee (Art. 49)?
Question 6: What are the tasks of the Competent Bodies?
Question 7: What are the tasks of the Accreditation/Licensing Bodies?

Question 1: What are the funding possibilities for the implementation of EMAS?

Question 1: What is EN ISO 14001?
Question 2: Is EMAS compatible with the international standard EN ISO 14001?
Question 3: What are the differences between ISO 14001 and EMAS?
Question 4: How to implement EMAS if ISO 14001 already exists?
Question 5: Modifications to EN ISO 14001 to meet EMAS requirements
Question 6: Modifications to EN ISO 14001 to meet EMAS requirements

Introduction to EMAS in the Public sector
Question 1: How does the public sector fit into the EMAS approach?
Question 2: How has EMAS registration developed in the public administration sector?
Question 3: Where can I find a list of EMAS-registered organisations in the public sector?

Participation in EMAS
Question 1: Is there a list available of consultants that have helped a public organisation registering with EMAS?
Question 2: Do you know of any public administration in the process of implementing EMAS?
Question 3: Is it possible for a local authority to register on a departmental basis?
Question 4: I am looking for municipalities to join us in an EMAS project

EMAS in the European Commission
Question 1: Is the European Commission EMAS registered?

Funding Opportunities
Question 1: Are specific funding opportunities for EMAS in local authorities available?

EMAS and Green Public Procurement
Question 1: What is the relationship between EMAS and green public procurement?

 

For the purpose of this FAQ:


EMAS III (hereafter; EMAS) = Regulation (EC) No 1221/2009 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 25 November 2009 on the voluntary participation by organisation in a Community eco-management and audit scheme (EMAS), repealing Regulation (EC) 761/2001 and Commission Decisions 2001/681/EC and 2006/193/EC.
(Official Journal of the European Communities L 342 of 22 December 2009)
Date of entry into force of latest revision of EMAS (so called “EMAS III”): 11 January 2010

Since January 2010, all organisations that seek EMAS registration and existing EMAS registered organisations that renew their registration are required to comply with the latest EMAS Regulation (“EMAS III”).

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Question 1: What is EMAS?

The Eco-Management and Audit Scheme, EMAS, is a voluntary environmental management tool for companies and other organisations to evaluate, report and improve their environmental performance. EMAS promotes continuous evaluation and improvements in the environmental performance of participating organisations. The scheme has been operative since April 1995. The latest revision came into effect on 11 January 2010. The new elements of the scheme lead to the enhanced performance, credibility and transparency of registered organisations and opened the scheme for organisations in non-EU countries.

Question 2: QUESTION 2: What are the key features of EMAS?

The key features of EMAS are performance, credibility and transparency. By carrying out annual updates of environmental policy targets and actions to implement and evaluate them, registered organisations continually improve their environmental performance and provide evidence that they comply with all environmental legislation that is applicable to them. Third-party verification from independent environmental verifiers significantly adds credibility to registered organisations by guaranteeing the value of both the actions taken and the disclosed environmental information. Transparency is generated by the environmental statement, which an organisation is required to provide as part of EMAS registration. The communication tool makes available to the public information on the environmental impact and performance of the organisation.

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Question 3: What is the history of EMAS?

The EMAS Regulation 1836/93 was first introduced in July 1993 as an environmental policy tool devised by the European Commission, in a step towards the Community’s goal of sustainable development. The EMAS scheme was open for voluntary participation by organisations from April 1995, and its scope restricted participation to sites operating industrial activities.
In 1996, the international environmental management system standard, EN ISO 14001:1996 was recognised as a step towards achieving EMAS.
In 2001 the revised Regulation (EC) No 761/2001 (EMAS II) was adopted. Its main elements were:

  1. the extension of the scope of EMAS to all sectors of economic activity including local authorities;

  2. the integration of ISO 14001 as the environmental management system required by EMAS, so that progressing from ISO 14001 to EMAS is smoother and does not entail duplication;

  3. the adoption of a visible and recognisable EMAS logo to allow registered organisations to publicise their participation in EMAS more effectively;

  4. the involvement of employees in the implementation of EMAS;

  5. the strengthening of the role of the environmental statement to improve the transparency of communication of environmental performance between registered organisations and their stakeholders and the public; and

  6. a more thorough consideration of indirect effects including capital investments, administrative and planning decisions, procurement procedures, choice and composition of services (e.g. catering).

In 2009 the EMAS Regulation has been revised and modified for the second time. Regulation (EC) No 1221/2009 (“EMAS III”) was published on 22 December 2009. The revised EMAS Regulation came into effect on 11 January 2010.

The new elements of EMAS, which came into effect on 11 January 2010, further strengthen the scheme and add value to registered organisations. EMAS includes the following major revisions:

  1. Improvement of the applicability and credibility of the scheme:
  • Transitional registration procedures to facilitate introduction of EMAS

  • Revised audit cycles to further improve applicability for SMEs.

  • Corporate registration to ease administrative and financial burdens on organisations with several EMAS registered sites

  • Cluster approach to provide specific assistance to clusters of organisations in the development and implementation phases of EMAS registration

  • Environmental core indicators to adequately document environmental performance and create multi-annual comparability within and between organisations

  • Sectoral reference documents to facilitate the practical implementation 'on the ground' of EMAS requirements

  • Assistance from Member States to organisations on compliance with legal requirements relating to the environment to ease EMAS registration for organisations

  • Enhanced legal compliance to further strengthen the credibility of the scheme
  1. Strengthening EMAS' visibility and outreach:
  • Single EMAS logo to communicate EMAS in one coherent and distinctive way

  • EMAS Global to encourage the global uptake of the scheme by making EMAS certification possible for organisations and sites located outside the EU Community

  • Informational and promotional activities of EU Member States and the European Commission to support EMAS

  • Recognition of other Environmental Management Systems to facilitate upgrade from existing Environmental Management Systems to EMASof the scheme

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Question 4: Where can I find the latest EMAS Regulation?

On the following page of the EMAS website /environment/emas/documents/legislative_en.htm, you can find a link to download the new Regulation (EC) No 1221/2009 (EMAS) in all Community languages. You can also follow this link:
http://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/?uri=OJ:L:2009:342:0001:0045:EN:PDF

Question 5: How does EMAS fit into the wider sustainable development approach of the European Union?

The overall objective of the European Community, as defined by the Maastricht Treaty, is in particular to promote “[…] a harmonious and balanced development of economic activities, sustainable and non-inflationary growth respecting the environment, […] the raising of the standard of living and quality of life, and economic and social cohesion and solidarity among Member States” (Article 2).

The goal of sustainable development, which is reinforced by the European Union’s renewed Sustainable Development Strategy (EU SDS), calls for the use of a wider range of environmental policy tools. In 2008, the European Commission presented the Sustainable Consumption and Production and Sustainable Industrial Policy (SCP/SIP) Action Plan, which is an integral part of the EU SDS.The SCP/SIPAction Plan includes a set of proposals and tools on sustainable consumption and production. The aim of these proposals and tools is to improve the environmental performance of products and/or organisations and to increase the demand for more sustainable goods and production technologies.EMAS is among the powerful tools designed to promote resource-efficient and leaner production.

EMAS and additional tools such as the EU Ecolabel or Green Public Procurement (GPP) complement a range of EU and national policies that are aimed at improving sustainable consumption and production. However, EMAS neither replaces existing Community or national environmental legislation or technical standards nor does it, in any way, remove a company’s responsibility to fulfil all its legal obligations under such legislation or standards.

Question 6: Where can I find EMAS statistics?

You can directly access the EMAS register/database and define any query you would like to define, access predefined queries and access statistics on the following website: /environment/emas/register/.

On this website you can choose among different options using the basic search box. You can also use the "Show Advanced Search Criteria" function to find the following specific information:

  • Searching by registration number under "Registration Specific Information
  • Searching by organisation name and/or country under "Organisation"
  • Searching by site name, country, and/or NACE code of activities under "Site". A NACE Code is a code for the statistical classification of economic activities
  • Searching by accredited verifier under "Accredited verifier"
  • You also can combine any of the above options for a more specific search

The different results of your search queries can be easily downloaded to Excel sheets by clicking on the "Extract Excel" button at the top of your search results. You may use this data in any form you like, such as in your own documents. Reproduction is authorized provided the source is acknowledged.

You also can download the full EMAS table by leaving all fields empty in the base search. This method enables you to use all Excel functions to sort the data and to calculate the different numbers and statistics for which you are looking.


To find general EMAS statistics (such as the number of EMAS registered organisations per country) a list of standard reports is available for viewing and download here: /environment/emas/register/reports/reports.do.

Of course, you can always address your questions to the EMAS Helpdesk, but by using the database/register yourself you have the advantage that you have a direct access to the information and that you can define specific queries to which you have an immediate answer. Moreover, this information is up-to-date and based on the latest updates of the EMAS register.

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Question 7: Where can I find information on EMAS registered organizations of a specific sector?

When you are searching for a specific sector in the register, you need to follow these steps:

  • Go to the Online Register page (/environment/emas/register/)
  • Click on "Show advanced search criteria"
  • Click on "Site", under this criteria you will find the NACE codes of activities
  • Click on the NACE code you are interested in, then click search and you will get a list of all the companies registered under the NACE code you looked for
  • To download the results to an Excel sheet, click on the "Extract Excel" button

For a full list of NACE codes, please consult the following document: http://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/PDF/?uri=CELEX:32006R1893&from=en.

Note: Please be aware that when searching by NACE codes of activities, if you choose multiple, the results will show only EMAS registered organisations which have all the codes you clicked on.

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Question 1: Why should my organisation participate in EMAS?
Interest from stakeholders in organisations’ environmental performance is continually increasing. It is no longer possible for organisations to operate without taking into account the environmental consequences of their actions. Organisations with a proactive approach to environmental challenges want to improve their (environmental) performance continuously. EMAS is the perfect tool to achieve this. The elements of the scheme lead to the enhanced performance, credibility and transparency of registered organisations.

Question 2: What are the benefits of EMAS?

A 2009 study from the European Commission (official title: ‘Study on the Costs and Benefits of EMAS to Registered Organisations’) analyses the costs and benefits of EMAS registrations (see the complete study at /environment/emas/pdf/news/costs_and_benefits_of_emas.pdf). Convincing evidence was found for a number of benefits arising from EMAS registration, including reduced costs for resources and waste management, risk minimisation, regulatory compliance, regulatory relief, improved relations with internal and external stakeholders, and achieving competitive advantage.

  • Cost reductions
Establishing EMAS enables organisations to identify opportunities for better management of resources. Increased efficiency and energy savings were identified as main benefits for registered organisations in the study.
  • Risk minimisation
By assessing their operational procedures, organisations can find possibilities to reduce associated risk levels. This is particularly relevant for organisations in the manufacturing sector, where risks associated with industrial processes are significant and strategies to minimise risks and to reduce negative incidents rest upon an understanding of all aspects of production. The study indicates that effective risk management can generate financial benefits by increasing trust amongst shareholders, investors, insurance companies and financial institutions.
  • Regulatory compliance
Registration to EMAS requires organisations to be both familiar with relevant regulatory requirements and better prepared to tackle regulatory issues in an organised way. One of the most important benefits identified in the study includes greater awareness of regulatory requirements leading to better relations with regulators.
  • Regulatory relief
Authorities may choose to relax regulatory requirements for EMAS registered organisations. For instance, a duplication of efforts can be avoided for organisations reporting on their environmental performance as part of EMAS requirements. Also, EMAS registered organisations may be subject to fewer environmental inspections. However, granting regulatory relief is in the ambit of Member State authorities; the possibility of capitalising on this benefit is thus not consistent across the EU.
  • Improved relations with internal stakeholders
EMAS can lead to improvements in internal relations within organisations. For instance, employee involvement and training under EMAS can lead to improved employee morale and a better implementation of the environmental management system.
  • Improved relations with external stakeholders
Benefits can be generated through an improvement in relations with external stakeholders. In addition to improved relations with regulators, EMAS registration of a site in close proximity to residential areas can enhance credibility and transparency with regard to relations with citizens or local NGOs.
  • Competitive advantage
Finally, EMAS registration can lead to increased market access and improved relations with customers. Both the EMAS logo and the environmental statement can be used in marketing and communication activities.

Please also visit the section on case studies of the official EMAS website for examples of concrete benefits of EMAS implementations in different organisations. For more information on the performance of EMAS, please read the Evaluation of EMAS and Ecolabel for their Revision (EVER) study, which is also available on the official EMAS website.

A factsheet is also available outlining the benefits of EMAS.

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Question 3: What are the benefits of EMAS for small or medium-sized enterprises (SMEs)?

Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and micro-enterprises are the economic backbone of most economies around the world by contributing to economic growth and employing a significant numbers of people. However, collectively, SMEs and micro enterprises also cause significant impacts on the environment by their production activities, products and services. Given the significant effects on the environment, SME and micro enterprise participation in implementing an Environmental Management System is an important step towards promoting a resource-efficient and sustainable production.

Generally, SMEs and micro enterprises can realise many of the same benefits that larger organisations gain from EMAS registration. In the European Commission ‘Study on the Costs and Benefits of EMAS to Registered Organisations’ energy and resource savings were identified as important benefits, since most environmental impacts also have financial implications, as they represent inefficient use of substances. EMAS organisations indicated that their annual energy savings alone exceeded the annual costs of maintaining EMAS. In addition, gaining access to public contracts was highlighted as a key benefit for SMEs.

For SMEs in the supply chain EMAS registration of client companies can have a direct impact. A growing number of small companies will need to demonstrate (or have already demonstrated) a recognised track record of systematic environmental management. In fact, often supplier companies are required to have EMAS registration in order to gain market access. For instance, in industry sectors close to the customer, suppliers note that their customers request EMAS registration.

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Question 4: Does EMAS distinguish between organisations making more/less improvement to their environmental performance?

EMAS’ objective is to continuously improve the environmental performance of registered organisations by having them commit to evaluating and reducing their environmental impact. Independent environmental verifiers verify organisations’ improvement of their environmental performance. After the validated environmental statement is sent to the Competent Body it has to be made publicly available. Only then the organisation is listed in the EMAS Register and has the right to use the EMAS logo.

Additionally, since 2005, the European Commission annually organised the European EMAS Awards, which is the most prestigious award in environmental management. The Awards are handed out to companies and local authorities that excel in issues such as energy efficiency or resource efficiency. Further information on the European EMAS Awards is available at: /environment/emas/emasawards/index.htm

Question 5: What are the costs of EMAS?
Several variables, including the size (micro, small, medium and large) and type (public or private) of organisations or the region in which they are registered, influence the costs of implementing EMAS. The following three categories of costs can be distinguished:

Fixed costs faced by organisations to register are assumed to be unrelated to staff numbers. These costs can entail:
  • Validation and verification fees
Environmental verifiers are private consultants and therefore charge the usual market prices for consultancy services. Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) without complex environmental impacts can be verified in one or a few days only.
  • Registration fees
Registration fees are different from verification costs and can vary from zero to € 1500 in the case of large companies. In Article 36 EMAS foresees reduced registration fees for SMEs to encourage higher participation. Some EU Member States have already introduced such reductions for SMEs (please contact your national/regional Competent Body to receive detailed information on registration fees).
  • Fixed costs of adding EMAS logo to stationary and producing publicity material

External costs of implementing EMAS are incurred by employing external expertise to support EMAS implementation and reporting.

  • External consultant

Support may be needed for the initial review, auditing, training and ongoing implementation of EMAS. Internal costs are incurred by organisation staff to implement, administer and report on EMAS. The costs include the following aspects:

  • Environmental review
  • Development of environmental management system
  • Internal audit
  • Preparation of EMAS statement
  • Internal staff training
  • Attaching EMAS logo
  • Modifications to IT systems
  • Publication of environmental statement
  • Other costs related to administration

The internal costs rest upon implementation and maintenance costs. A significant part of internal costs is the internal resources required to implement the scheme. Depending on the organisation’s size, number of sites, previous experience with management systems and the complexity of environmental impacts, the typical personal commitment to implement EMAS varies from a few persons per month in a small company in the service sector to several persons per year in large corporations with many sites. Costs in subsequent years are on average around half of those in the first year. Higher costs in the first year result from learning EMAS requirements and establishing the necessary management and administrative systems, often requiring expert advice from outside the organisation.

Once EMAS is implemented and registration attained, system maintenance takes many fewer resources, since many activities required for the first registration are no longer needed (e.g. the initial review, installation of measurement and data management systems, and distribution of responsibilities). External consultancy costs show the largest reduction, with costs declining in subsequent years to approximately one third of those incurred in the first year.

In-depth information on benefits and costs is available in the ‘Study on the Costs and Benefits of EMAS to Registered Organisations’. Please also visit the section on case studies for examples of EMAS implementations in different organisations.

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Question 1: Which organisations can participate in EMAS?

Participation in the scheme is open to organisations operating in all economic sectors (see FAQ on the definition of ‘organisations’ for additional information). EMAS identifies different types of economic activity areas by using ‘Statistical Classification of Economic Activity (NACE) Codes’ (see FAQ on ‘NACE codes’ for additional information).

Question 2: What is the geographical scope of EMAS?

With the introduction of the latest revision of EMAS in 2010, the scheme is also open to non-European organisations and European organisations operating in third countries (Articles 1 and 11 of EMAS).

The EMAS Regulation applies to all 27 EU Member States, the three European Economic Area Member States (i.e. Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein) and European Union Accession Countries. In addition, if a Member State decides to allow registration of organisations located outside the Community (EMAS Global), these organisations have to address their request for registration to a Competent Body of that Member State. The organisation has to contact an environmental verifier from the same Member State.

Competent bodies are responsible for the registration of EMAS organisations and are also responsible for the registration of organisations located outside the Community.

At the moment, Competent Bodies in seven EU countries are able to process registrations outside of Europe – Belgium, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Italy and Portugal and Spain. Their contact details can be found at the links below:

  • Belgium: /environment/emas/tools/contacts/be_en.htm
  • Denmark: /environment/emas/tools/contacts/dk_en.htm
  • Finland: /environment/emas/tools/contacts/fi_en.htm
  • Germany: /environment/emas/tools/contacts/de_en.htm
  • Italy: /environment/emas/tools/contacts/it_en.htm
  • Portugal: /environment/emas/tools/contacts/pt_en.htm
  • Spain: /environment/emas/tools/contacts/es_en.htm
  • The EMAS Helpdesk has also prepared a factsheet on EMAS Global that summarises the key provisions and requirements.

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    Question 3: What is the definition of an "organisation"?

    According to Article 2(21) of EMAS, ‘organisation’ means a company, corporation, firm, enterprise, authority or institution located inside or outside the Community, or part or combination thereof, whether incorporated or not, public or private, which has its own functions and administration.

    Question 4: What is the definition of "small organisations"?

    According to Article 2(28) of EMAS "small organisations" means:

    1. Micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (mainly companies with fewer than 250 employees) as defined in Commission Recommendation 2003/361/EC of 6 May 2003 concerning the definition of micro, small and medium-sized enterprises; or
    2. Local authorities governing fewer than 10 000 inhabitants or other public authorities employing fewer than 250 persons and having an annual budget not exceeding EUR 50 million, or an annual balance sheet not exceeding EUR 43 million, including all of the following:
    (i) government or other public administrations, or public advisory bodies at national, regional or local level;
    (ii) natural or legal persons performing public administrative functions under national law, including specific duties, activities or services in relation to the environment; and
    (iii) natural or legal persons having public responsibilities or functions, or providing public services, relating to the environment under the control of a body or person referred to in point (b).

    Question 5: What is the difference between a site and an organisation?

    In most cases, a site is best understood as a production facility of an organisation, respectively, company. Hence, one organisation can have more than one site that is EMAS registered.

    Following the official definition, ‘site’ shall mean, according to Article 2(22) of EMAS, a distinct geographical location under the management control of an organisation covering activities, products and services, including all infrastructure, equipment and materials; a site is the smallest entity to be considered for registration.

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    Question 1:Why should my organisation move from another Environmental Management System to EMAS?

    The number of non-formal Environmental Management System is increasing all over the EU, as they have been designed to cover specific needs coming from specific areas or specific sectors of activity. Though each Environmental Management System represents a worthy step towards improved environmental performance, committed organisations can come to a point where they face the system’s limits and feel the need for a more demanding and ambitious Environmental Management System. EMAS, the premium benchmark for environmental management, significantly enhances the performance, credibility and transparency of registered organisations. This is achieved in particular through the environmental statement that facilitates and strengthens interactions with an organisation’s stakeholders and through the scheme’s requirements in relation to both compliance with relevant environmental legislation and continuous improvement of an organisation’s performance. 

    Question 2:Can non-formal Environmental Management Systems or parts thereof be recognised as complying with corresponding requirements of EMAS

    Yes, this is possible. Based on Article 45 of EMAS, existing Environmental Management Systems or parts thereof can be recognised as complying with corresponding requirements of EMAS. This recognition is valuable for organisations seeking to register with EMAS so as to enhance their performance, credibility and transparency. Organisations can now seek EMAS registration using the previous work they have carried out to fulfil the criteria for another Environmental Management System.

    In order to achieve recognition, Member States need to submit a written request to the European Commission. Member States should specify the parts for which they are seeking recognition, and provide evidence of their equivalence to EMAS.

    Question 3:How to move from another Environmental Management System to EMAS?

    In 2009, the European Commission launched a study outlining a step-by-step approach to upgrading from selected non-formal EMS and ISO 14001 to EMAS. The study is available here. In addition to providing critical information for organisations that have already adopted an Environmental Management System other than EMAS, the study can prove useful for Member States that are considering submitting a request as foreseen in Article 45 of EMAS.

    Question 4:Which Environmental Management Systems aside from EN ISO 14001 are compatible with EMAS?

    The European Commission has recently published a ‘Study on Guidelines for Transition from Non-Formal EMAS and ISO 14001 to EMAS’. The study analyses 20 of the most relevant Environmental Management Systems in terms of geographical scope and affinity to EMAS and outlines the steps to move from each system to EMAS. A decision as to the recognition of non-formal Environmental Management Systems by the European Commission has not been made so far, although two countries have filed a request for recognition of local Environmental Management Systems as corresponding with EMAS requirements.

    Question 1: What are the different steps to implementing EMAS?
    The main stages involved in achieving EMAS registration and adding value to the organisation are as follows:
    1. An organisation needs to conduct an environmental review considering all environmental aspects of the organisation’s activities, products and services, methods to assess them, the organisation’s legal and regulatory framework and existing environmental management practices and procedures.

    2. Registration to EMAS requires an organisation to adopt an environmental policy and to commit itself both to compliance with all relevant environmental legislation and to achieve continuous improvements in environmental performance.

    3. Through an environmental programme an organisation translates general objectives established in the environmental policy into specific targets. An organisation needs to determine concrete measures, responsibilities and means taken or envisaged to achieve environmental objectives and targets and the deadlines for achieving the objectives.

    4. Based on the results of the environmental review and the development of an environmental policy, an effective environmental management system needs to be established. The Environmental Management System is aimed at achieving the organisation’s environmental policy objectives as defined by the top management. The management system needs to set responsibilities, roles, operational procedures, training needs, monitoring and communication systems.

    5. After an Environmental Management System is established, an internal environmental audit is carried out. The audit assesses in particular if the management system is in place and in conformity with the organisation’s policy and programme. The audit also checks if the organisation is in compliance with relevant environmental regulatory requirements.

    6. An organisation needs to provide a public statement of its environmental performance. The environmental statement lays down the results achieved against the environmental objectives and the future steps to be undertaken in order to continuously improve the organisation’s environmental performance.

    7. An environmental verifier accredited with an EMAS Accreditation/Licensing Body of a Member State must examine and verify the environmental review, the Environmental Management System, the audit procedure and the environmental statement.

    8. Once the environmental statement has been validated by the environmental verifier, the Competent Body will register the company after receipt of the registration fee. The company now has the right to use the EMAS logo.

    9. The organisation can use information from the validated environmental statement to market its activities with the EMAS logo, assess suppliers against EMAS requirements and give preference to suppliers registered under EMAS.

    Question 2 :How must an organisation show legal compliance?

    According to Art. 4 (4) of EMAS, organisations shall provide material or documentary evidence showing that it complies with all applicable legal requirements relating to the environment. According to Art. 15 of EMAS, national Competent Bodies are responsible for suspending or deleting non-compliant organisations from the EMAS register.

    Question 3 :Are there any penalties for non-compliance with EMAS?

    Yes, there are penalties for non-compliance. Since EMAS is based on a Regulation, Member States are responsible for taking appropriate legal or administrative measures to resolve accidental non-compliance situations as quickly as possible. The main sanctioning instrument in the case of (ongoing) non-compliance with the Regulation is suspension or deletion from the EMAS register.

    Question 4 : Who can use the advantages of a single corporate registration?

    According to Article 3(2) of EMAS, organisations with sites located in more than one Member State may apply for one single corporate registration of all or some of those sites. Application for a single corporate registration will be made to a Competent Body of the EU Member State where the organisation’s headquarters or management centre is located.

    Question 5 : Who can use the advantages of a cluster approach?

    EU Member States should encourage local authorities to provide specific assistance in the development and implementation phases towards EMAS registration to clusters of organisations such as industrial associations or regional chambers of commerce (Article 37 of EMAS). Each organisation from the cluster will be registered separately. A cluster approach is possible for a group of organisations located in one EU Member State or located in different EU Member States.

    Question 6 : What are the NACE codes?

    NACE stands for ‘Nomenclature générale des activités économiques dans les Communautés Européennes’, which is the standard for classification of economic activities in the EU. The latest NACE codes (Revision 2) are based on the Regulation (EC) No 1893/2006 of the European Parliament and of the Council, establishing the statistical classification of economic activities.

    For EMAS, the NACE codes are used to classify the registered organisations and the accredited environmental verifiers. The agreement was made that the Competent Body which registers the site and forwards the information to the EMAS Helpdesk should collect NACE information with a minimum of one decimal after the point. Competent Bodies may compile more detailed NACE information (see the complete NACE code list).

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    Question 1: What are the revised audit cycles for small organisations?
    With the introduction of the latest revision of EMAS in 2010, environmental audits, covering all activities at the organisation concerned, must be conducted within an audit cycle of no longer than three years. However, for small organisations (see FAQ on ‘small organisations’ for a definition) EMAS offers derogations (Article 7). Upon request of small organisations, Competent Bodies can extend the registration cycle as follows:
    1. verification of full environmental management system and audit programme and its implementation as well as environmental statement validated in a four-yearly frequency (instead of a three-yearly frequency);

    2. validated updated environmental statement every two years (instead of every year).
    The extension can only be granted when the following conditions are fulfilled:
    1. no significant environmental risks are present;

    2. the organisation has no substantial changes planned as defined in Article 8 of EMAS; and

    3. there exist no significant local environmental problems that the organisation contributes to.
    The organisation aiming to benefit from the extension has to introduce the request to the Competent Body, including the elements ensuring that the three conditions are met and including the confirmation of the environmental verifier that these conditions are met.

    Organisations should be aware that:
    1. nevertheless, each year they are exempt from the obligation to prepare a validated updated environmental statement, they need to forward the non-validated updated environmental statement to the Competent Body; and

    2. the extension does not concern the EN ISO 14001:2004 standard with a three-yearly audit cycle. Hence, if they also have ISO certification, the audit cycles do not correspond.

    QUESTION 2: Is a site visit obligatory as part of the renewal of EMAS registration in intervening years?

    Yes. The provisions for site visits as part of the renewal of EMAS registration can be found in Art. 25(4) in conjunction with Art. 6(2) and Art. 18(7) (all EMAS). According to Art. 25(4), site visits are obligatory in intervening years. Derogations apply to small organisations according to Art. 7, particularly Art. 7(3).

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    Question 1: Which information needs to be included in the environmental statement?
    The environmental statement entails, according to Annex IV of EMAS, the following information:
    1. a clear and unambiguous description of the organisation registering under EMAS and a summary of its activities, products and services and its relationship to any parent organisations as appropriate;

    2. the environmental policy (objectives) and a brief description of the environmental management system of the organisation;

    3. a description of all the significant direct and indirect environmental aspects which result in significant environmental impacts of the organisation and an explanation of the nature of the impacts as related to these aspects;

    4. a description of the environmental objectives and targets in relation to the significant environmental aspects and impacts;

    5. a summary of the data available on the performance of the organisation against its environmental objectives and targets with respect to its significant environmental impacts. Reporting shall be on the core indicators and on other relevant existing environmental performance indicators as set out in the EMAS Regulation (Section C);

    6. other factors regarding environmental performance including performance against legal provisions with respect to their significant environmental impacts;

    7. a reference to the applicable legal requirements relating to the environment; and

    8. the name and accreditation or licence number of the environmental verifier and the date of validation.

    The updated environmental statement shall contain at least the elements and shall meet the minimum requirements as set out in points (e) to (h).

    Question 2: What are environmental core indicators?

    Environmental core indicators are introduced for a more harmonised and thorough consideration of direct environmental aspects. In the environmental statement organisations need to report on core indicators insofar as these relate to the direct environmental aspects of the organisation (Annex IV of EMAS). Direct environmental aspects are environmental aspects associated with activities, products and services of the organisation itself over which it has direct management control. The core indicators focus on performance in the following key environmental areas:

    • Energy efficiency: total direct energy use, including renewable energy use;

    • Material efficiency: annual mass-flow of different materials used;

    • Water: total annual water consumption;

    • Waste: total annual generation of (hazardous) waste;

    • Biodiversity: use of land; and

    • Emissions: total annual emission of greenhouse gases and total annual air emission.

    An organisation may decide not to report on a specific core indicator where it concludes that one or more indicators are not relevant to its significant direct environmental aspects. The organisation must then provide justifications with reference to its environmental review.

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    Question 1: What are the conditions for using the EMAS logo?

    The EMAS logo is an appealing communication and marketing tool for organisations which raises buyers’ and other stakeholders’ awareness of EMAS. With the introduction of the latest revision of EMAS, only one logo is used by EMAS registered organisations. The EMAS logo using the wording ‘Verified Environmental Management’ in conjunction with the registration number (set out in Annex V of EMAS) may be used only by registered organisations and only as long as their registration is valid. The logo shall always bear the registration number.

    The EMAS logo has the following functions:

    1. to indicate the reliability and credibility of information provided by an organisation with regard to its environmental performance;

    2. to indicate the organisation’s commitment to improvement in environmental performance and to the sound management of its environmental aspects; and

    3. to raise awareness about the scheme in the public, among interested parties and among organisations willing to improve their environmental performance.

    Any environmental information published by a registered organisation may bear the EMAS logo provided that such information makes reference to the organisation’s latest environmental statement or updated environmental statement.

    According to Article 10 of the Regulation, the logo shall not be used:

    1. on products or their packaging;

    2. in conjunction with comparative claims concerning other activities and services or in a way that may create confusion with environmental product labels.
    The logo uses the wording ‘Verified Environmental Management’ (Annex V of EMAS) in conjunction with the registration number (see a sample picture below).

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    The logo shall be used either:

    • in three colours (Pantone No 355 Green; Pantone 109 Yellow; Pantone No 286 Blue); or

    • in black; or

    • in white; or

    • in a grey scale.

    According to Article 35 of EMAS, the EMAS logo without a registration number may be used by Competent Bodies, Accreditation and Licensing Bodies, national authorities and other stakeholders for EMAS-related marketing and promotional purposes. In such cases, use of the EMAS logo must not suggest that the user is registered where it is not the case.

    The German EMAS Advisory Board published a guide (in English) with examples of excellent use of the EMAS logo.

    Question 2: Are there any penalties for the misues of the EMAS logo?

    Yes, there are penalties for the misuse of the logo. Provisions with regard to non-compliance are laid out in Art. 40 of EMAS. Member States shall take appropriate legal or administrative measures in the case of non-compliance with the EMAS Regulation.

    Provisions put in place by Member States against the use of the EMAS logo may refer to Directive 2005/29/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council concerning unfair business-to-consumer commercial practices in the internal market.

    Question 1: What are sectoral reference documents?

    In November 2011, the European Commission established a working plan setting out an indicative list of sectors to be considered as priorities for the adoption of sectoral and cross-sectoral reference documents. Those sectors are as follows:

    • Retail trade
    • Tourism
    • Construction
    • Public Administration
    • Agriculture - Crop production and Animal production
    • Food and beverage manufacturing
    • Car manufacturing
    • Manufacture of electronic and electrical equipment
    • Manufacture of fabricated metal products, except machinery and equipment
    • Waste management
    • Telecommunications

    Final 'Scientific and Policy Reports' for the retail trade and tourism sectors as well as a final draft 'Scientific and Policy Report' for the construction sector are available on the European Commission Joint Research Centre’s website. The actual Sectoral Reference Documents are executive summaries of these reports. Once adopted and published, final versions of the sectoral reference documents will also be available on the EMAS website.

    Question 2: What is the role of EU Member States and the European Commission in order to support EMAS?

    EU Member States, in cooperation with Competent Bodies and other relevant stakeholders, promote EMAS (Article 33 in conjunction with Article 35 of EMAS). To that end, EU Member States are encouraged to establish a promotion strategy. Furthermore, EU Member States will ensure assistance with regard to compliance with legal requirements relating to the environment (Article 32 in conjunction with Article 36 of EMAS). According to Article 45 of EMAS, EU Member States may submit a request for recognition of an existing EMS as equivalent to EMAS parts. Once the EMS is formally recognised by the European Commission as being equivalent to EMAS parts, organisations implementing that specific EMS are not obliged to carry out those parts when registering to EMAS.

    According to Article 42 of EMAS, the European Commission will make publicly available (inter alia) a database of environmental statements, a database of best practices on EMAS, and a list of Community resources for the funding of EMAS implementation and related projects and activities. In addition, the European Commission will consider how registration under EMAS can be taken into account in the development of new legislation and revision of existing legislation, in particular in the form of regulatory relief and better regulation.

    Question 3: Whom should my organisation contact if we want to register to EMAS?

    Every Member State has designated a Competent Body which is responsible for registering organisations and for maintaining the list of registered organisations in their country. The Competent Body can provide your organisation with useful information on the steps to implement EMAS and the administrative procedures and fees involved.
    You will find the contact details of your Competent Body on the contacts page of this website.

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    Question 2: Question 4: What is the EMAS Helpdesk?

    The Helpdesk is a service provided by the European Commission, operated by BIO Intelligence Services in collaboration with Adelphi.

    The objectives of the EMAS Helpdesk are as follows:

    1. to provide high-quality and effective information services to all interested parties such as companies, environmental groups, academic researchers, trade unions and the general public. The Helpdesk can provide you with the latest EMAS figures, list of organisations and verifiers and various documents on EMAS;

    2. to ensure the effective collection and listing of data concerning all industrial organisations participating in EMAS and all accredited environmental verifiers. All data on EMAS collected from the EU Member States is made available to the public via the EMAS website;

    3. to design and maintain the official EMAS website; and

    4. to support the Commission in its efforts to promote the scheme by drafting, designing and disseminating promotional material (e.g. web news, newsletter, fact sheets) in the framework of a communication campaign for different targets and in multiple EU languages.

    To get in touch with the Helpdesk, see its contact details in the contacts page.

    Question 5: What are the tasks of the Regulatory Committee (Art. 49)?

    The Article 49 Regulatory Committee under EMAS is chaired by the European Commission. It represents the EU Member States and interest groups. The Committee meets several times a year to support the European Commission in practical issues concerning the implementation of the EMAS Regulation. Areas in which the Committee has to be involved are defined by the Regulation; they include, amongst others: finding ways to disseminate best practice for the promotion of the scheme, adopting rules for the use of the logo, revising and updating the annexes of the Regulation.

    Question 6: What are the tasks of the Competent Bodies?

    Each Member State designates a national — independent and neutral – Competent Body to organise the registration process of sites within its own territory. It is its responsibility to issue registration numbers to organisations which have submitted a validated environmental statement, collect any payable registration fee, refuse, suspend and delete organisations from the register and respond to enquiries concerning organisations on the national EMAS register. Changes to this register have to be communicated to the Commission. Consistency of procedures relating to the registration process is ensured by a peer review process of all Competent Bodies, which meet at least once a year to exchange information.

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    Question 7: What are the tasks of the Accreditation/Licensing Bodies?

    An Accreditation/Licensing Body is an independent, impartial institution or organisation responsible for the accreditation/issuing of licences to and supervision of environmental verifiers designated by Member States. Member States may use existing accreditation/licensing institutions or the EMAS Competent Body, or designate any other appropriate body. The Accreditation/Licensing Body establishes, revises and updates a list of environmental verifiers and their scope of accreditation (according to NACE codes) in their Member State. Changes to this list have to be communicated to the Competent Body and the Commission.

    Question 1: What are the funding possibilities for the implementation of EMAS?

    The European Commission does not provide specific financial support to individual organisations in order for them to participate in EMAS. Financial support is given to broader actions through open calls for tender, in particular for the development of means to support SME participation in the EMAS scheme.
    The Secretariat-General of the European Commission has produced a guide on Community funding entitled ‘Grants and Loans from the European Union’. It provides useful information about the way EU funding works and is available online at the following address:
    /contracts_grants/index_en.htm
    Funding may be obtained from the European Community’s LIFE-Environment programme, administered by Directorate-General Environment of the European Commission, for projects which fulfil the requirements of the programme. This does not cover the routine implementation of EMAS. More information about LIFE is available online at the following address:
    /environment/life/
    There is also general information on funding opportunities available from the Directorate-General Environment at the following address:
    http://europa.eu.int/comm/environment/funding/intro_en.htm
    Through the revised EMAS Regulation (Article 36) the Commission encourages individual EU Member States to provide support mechanisms for organisations wishing to implement EMAS. The revised EMAS regulation specifically mentions and encourages such support to SMEs.
    Within the various EU Member States there are a number of ongoing schemes that give particular emphasis to supporting the participation of SMEs in EMAS. While the European Commission does not maintain a central register of these national programmes, EU Member States are required to inform the European Commission of any measures taken to encourage organisations’ participation in EMAS. We suggest that you contact the relevant EMAS Competent Body for further information. You will find their contact details on this website in the contacts page.

    For further information on funding possibilities for local authorities, see Section 12.4 "Are specific funding opportunities for EMAS in local authorities available?" below.

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    Question 1: What is EN ISO 14001?

    ISO, the International Standards Organisation, has developed a series of standards and guidelines in the field of environment which collectively are known as the EN ISO 14000 series.

    EN ISO 14001: 2004 is one of the most well-known and widely implemented environmental standards. It is used worldwide by large and small organisations and in both the public and private sectors. The scheme is based on a ‘Plan-Do-Check-Act Cycle’ and specifies the most important requirements to identify, control, and monitor environmental aspects of organisations, as well as how to manage and improve environmental management systems.

    It is not correct to refer to the EN ISO 14000 standard. EN ISO 14001 is the only certifiable standard, the remainder being supportive guidelines.

    Currently the most advanced of the standards and guidelines in the series are:


    Series

    Subject

    Standards

    EN ISO 14000

    Environmental management systems

    EN ISO 14001
    EN ISO 14004

    EN ISO 14010

    Guidelines for environmental auditing

    EN ISO 14010
    EN ISO 14011
    EN ISO 14012

    EN ISO 14020

    Environmental labels and declarations

    EN ISO 14020
    EN ISO 14021
    EN ISO 14012

    EN ISO 14030

    Evaluating environmental performance

    EN ISO 14031

    EN ISO 14040

    Life cycle analysis

    EN ISO 14040
    EN ISO 14041
    EN ISO 14042
    EN ISO 14043

    EN ISO 14050

    Understanding terms and definitions

    EN ISO 14050

     

     

     

    Question 2: Is EMAS compatible with the international standard EN ISO 14001?

    Both EMAS and EN ISO 14001:2004 have the common objective of providing good environmental management. Yet too often they are seen as competitors. The European Commission has recognised that EN ISO 14001 can provide a stepping stone for EMAS. In fact, the ISO 14001: 2004 environmental management system requirements are an integral part of EMAS (Annex II of EMAS).

    The adoption of EN ISO 14001:2004 as the management system element of EMAS will allow organisations to progress from EN ISO 14001:2004 to EMAS without undue duplication of effort. A successful certification of EN ISO 14001:2004 means that the most important steps towards EMAS certification have been taken. However, certain additional steps will have to be taken in order to register under EMAS as the premium benchmark for environmental management.

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    Question 3: What are the differences between ISO 14001 and EMAS?

    Notable difference include:

    1. Environmental policy: EMAS includes commitment to continual improvement of the environmental performance of the organisation. ISO does not stipulate the extent to which performance must be improved. Rather, the scheme focuses on the performance of the management system.

    2. Initial review: EMAS requires a verified initial environmental review. ISO recommends but does not require an environmental review.

    3. Environmental aspects: EMAS specifies that organisations must be able to demonstrate that the management system and the audit procedures address the actual environmental performance of the organisation with respect to the direct and indirect aspects identified in the environmental review. Also, EMAS requires the establishment of criteria for assessing the significance of the environmental aspects. ISO requires only a procedure that helps identify environmental aspects

    4. Environmental core indicators: EMAS makes use of environmental core indicators that are to be included in the environmental statement. The indicators describe the performance of the organisation in certain key environmental areas. ISO does not include core indicators.

    5. Legal compliance: EMAS requiresorganisations to demonstrate that they have identified the implications of legal requirements relating to the environment, provide for legal compliance, and have procedures in place that enable the organisation to meet the requirements. There is also a compliance audit.ISO does not require organisations to demonstrate legal compliance, but to show commitment to comply. Also, there is no compliance audit required.

    6. Public availability: EMAS requires that the policy, programme, environmental management system and details of the organisations’ performance are made publicly available as part of the environmental statement. ISO requires only that the policy be publicly available.

    7. Continuous improvement: EMAS has stricter requirements on the improvement of environmental performance by registered organisations as itrequires annual improvement. ISO requires periodical improvement (of the environmental management system, but not so much of the environmental performance) without a defined frequency. Additionally, the EMAS Regulation explicitly states that the environmental verifier shall verify that continuous improvement of a registered organisation’s environmental performance has taken place.

    8. Management review: Under EMAS, the review is wider and requires an evaluation of the environmental performance of the organisation. The review is based on a performance audit. ISO requires an environmental performance review in the management, but not through a performance audit.

    9. Employee involvement: EMAS integrates active involvement of employees and their representatives. ISO does not address employee involvement.

    10. Internal environmental audits: EMAS audits include a system audit, a performance audit (= evaluation of environmental performance) and an environmental compliance audit (= determination of legal compliance). ISO includes a system audit against the requirements of the standard..

    11. Auditor: EMAS requires the independence of the auditor, whereas ISO advises the independence of the auditor.

    12. Registration with a public authority: EMAS must be registered with a Competent Body.

    13. Logo: EMAS registered organisations can use the logo for promotion and marketing activities, whereas ISO-certified organisations cannot make use of a logo.

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    Question 4: How to implement EMAS if ISO 14001 already exists?

    A step-up approach from EN ISO 14001:2004 to EMAS can provide organisations with significant additional benefits. For organisations already certified to EN ISO 14001:2004 there will be some minor modifications to be made to the core EN ISO 14001:2004 elements plus some additional steps specific to EMAS. The flow diagram in Question 6 of this section outlines the additional steps needed for implementation of EMAS for an EN ISO 14001:2004 certified organisation. Additional steps for EMAS registration are:

    1. Initial environmental review. The EMAS regulation requires that an initial environmental review be performed to identify an organisation’s environmental aspects. However, when an organisation already has an EMS certified to EN ISO 14001:2004 it does not need to conduct a formal environmental review when moving on to EMAS implementation, so long as the environmental aspects as set out in Annex I are fully considered in the certified EMS.

    2. Environmental statement. The organisation shall prepare an environmental statement, based on the outcome of the EMS performance audit. The organisation should check that the environmental statement fulfils the requirements of Annex IV of EMAS and should examine all the data generated by the environmental management system, as necessary, to ensure it is represented in a fair and balanced way in the environmental statement. The environmental statement must also be made public, which is not the case under ISO 14001.

    3. Verifying the environmental statement and environmental performance. In order to attain EMAS registration the environmental statement must be validated independently. This process will check that the statement meets the requirements of Annex IV of EMAS and is publicly available.

    4. The organisation must also commit itself to legal compliance. Under ISO 14001 this is not required.

    For further information, please have a look to the factsheet EMAS and ISO 14001: complementarities and differences.

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    Question 5: Modifications to EN ISO 14001 to meet EMAS requirements
     Generally, the two systems are complementary but EMAS is more rigorous in some areas. EMAS continues to be seen as more prestigious than EN ISO 14001:2004 in many EU Member States.
    1. Environmental policy. EN ISO 14001:2004 includes a commitment, but not a provision, to comply with relevant environmental legislation. The organisation must strengthen its statement of commitment, included in its environmental policy, to commit itself to ensuring regulatory compliance. Regarding ‘continual improvement’ it should be noted that if more than one site is registered under EMAS then continual improvement must be demonstrated on a site by site basis.

    2. Planning. The EMAS Regulation has very specific requirements on the type of environmental aspects which must be addressed, while EN ISO 14001:2004 is less prescriptive in this area.

      The organisation should ensure that, in identifying its environmental aspects in the planning stage of EN ISO 14001:2004, it has addressed all those items listed in Annex I which are applicable to the organisation.The organisation should also ensure that all the elements of the initial environmental review, detailed in Annex I, have been considered and incorporated where necessary in the EN ISO 14001 process.

      Although many companies with EN ISO 14001:2004 may keep registers of identified environmental effects and relevant legislation, it should be noted that under EMAS this is mandatory.

      It is possible that the areas and the scope covered by EN ISO 14001:2004 and EMAS may be different. The organisation should take steps to ensure that the scope to be covered by the EMAS registration is covered by the EN ISO 14001:2004 certificate.

    1. Implementation. One of the requirements of EMAS is the active participation of employees in the environmental improvement programme. This may be achieved in a variety of ways, for example by establishing an environmental committee or a suggestion book, or by appointing environmental representatives. The organisation should also take steps to ensure that any suppliers and contractors used also comply with the organisation’s environmental policy.

    2. Checking and corrective action. It is necessary for the ISO-certified organisation to check that the frequency of the audit cycle is in compliance with Annex III of the EMAS Regulation and takes place at intervals of no longer than three years. In addition to the EMS being audited, the environmental performance of the organisation must also be addressed annually to demonstrate continual improvement (see FAQ on ‘Audit Cycles’ for additional information).

    3. Certification of EN ISO 14001:2004. In order to comply with the requirements of EMAS, the EN ISO 14001 certificate must be issued under one of the accreditation procedures recognised by the European Commission.

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    Question 6: Modifications to EN ISO 14001 to meet EMAS requirements
    EMAS Implementation Route for an EN ISO 14001 certified organisation

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    Introduction to EMAS in the Public sector

    Question 1: How does the public sector fit into the EMAS approach?
    Public authorities play an important role in promoting environmental consciousness and sustainable development. For instance, local authorities are key players in local economies, as they have many responsibilities: for schools, waste disposal, road maintenance, the fire service and many more. As the level of government closest to citizens, local authorities exert a significant influence on the environmental practices of the general public. Local authorities may set an example by improving their own environmental performance through energy savings. Influence can also be exerted through green public procurement. EMAS may be used by public sector purchasers wishing to promote a greener purchasing policy.

    Question 2: How has EMAS registration developed in the public administration sector?
    Participation in EMAS has officially been open to the public administration sector since April 2001 when the EMAS Regulation was revised. Since then, the public administration has been one of the fastest-growing sectors as regards EMAS uptake.
    Graphics and statistics on EMAS uptake in the public administration sector are available in the EMAS register/database at: /environment/emas/register/.

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    Question 3: Where can I find a list of EMAS-registered organisations in the public sector?
    A list of EMAS-registered organisations of the public administration sector can be found in the EMAS register/database. You can directly access the EMAS register/database and define any query you would like to define, access predefined queries and access statistics on the following website: /environment/emas/register/.

    When you are searching for a specific sector in the register, you need to follow these steps:

    • Go to the Online Register page (/environment/emas/register/)
    • Click on "Show advanced search criteria"
    • Click on "Site", under this criteria you will find the NACE codes of activities
    • Click on the NACE code you are interested in, then click search and you will get a list of all the companies registered under the NACE code you looked for
    • To download the results to an Excel sheet, click on the "Extract Excel" button

    For a full list of NACE codes, please consult the following document: /environment/emas/pdf/general/nacecodes_en.pdf.

    To find the list of all EMAS registered organisations in the public sector, you need to select this NACE codes groups: 84.1, 84.2, 84.3. You can choose out of these groups the class with the specific sector you are interested in.

    Note: Please be aware that when searching by NACE codes of activities, if you choose multiple, the results will show only EMAS registered organisations which have ALL the codes you clicked on.

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    Participation in EMAS

    Question 1: Is there a list available of consultants that have helped a public organisation registering with EMAS?

    Unfortunately, the EMAS Helpdesk cannot provide you with such a list, but we would recommend you to contact other public sector organisations that have implemented the scheme. In addition feel free to contact the Competent Body in the country of your interest, which might be able to provide you with further information.
    Contact details for Competent Bodies are available at: /environment/emas/tools/contacts/countrymap_en.htm

    Question 2: Do you know of any public administration in the process of implementing EMAS?
    Unfortunately, the EMAS Helpdesk cannot keep track of organisations that have started EMAS implementation. EMAS organisations are logged into our EU database only once they have been registered by their Competent Body and the latter has notified us of this new registration.
    Competent Bodies in each Member State may be in a better position to help you because they regularly establish contacts with organisations even before these organisations have finalised EMAS implementation.
    Contact details for Competent Bodies are available at: //environment/emas/tools/contacts/countrymap_en.htm

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    Question 3: Is it possible for a local authority to register on a departmental basis?
    Registration on a departmental basis is possible under the following conditions:
    • the registered entity needs to have management control and influence over its environmental aspects;

    • commitment from the top level of the organisation is required;

    • use of the logo and communication to the public must be clear and unambiguous (stakeholders should recognise which part of the local authority is registered).

    Question 4: I am looking for municipalities to join us in an EMAS project

    You are welcome to send a project description and a call for partners to the EMAS Helpdesk. We will publish it on this website together with your email address, so that interested organisations can contact you directly.

    EMAS in the European Commission

    Question 1: Is the European Commission EMAS registered?

    On 7 September 2001, the European Commission adopted a Decision (C (2001)/2591) whereby it politically engaged in a process of applying the EMAS Regulation to its activities. The first phase of this Decision was a pilot project where EMAS was implemented by several key services. After its successful conclusion, the Commission has decided on 23 September 2009 to extend the implementation of the EMAS scheme to all its activities and buildings on its Brussels and Luxemburg sites. By adopting this Decision, the Commission aims towards a better environmental management of its resources

    For more information: /environment/emas/emas_ec/index_en.htm

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    Funding Opportunities

    Question 1: Are specific funding opportunities for EMAS in local authorities available?

    On the EU level, the LIFE programme is the financial instrument for environmental projects. The programme supports environmental initiatives in the European Union, some candidate countries and certain third countries. LIFE actions contribute to the development of innovative techniques and methods by co-financing demonstration projects.
    It is possible that some Member States have national funding instruments to support EMAS in the public sector. Please contact your Competent Body for more details.
    Contact details for Competent Bodies are available at: /environment/emas/tools/contacts/countrymap_en.htm

    EMAS and Green Public Procurement

    Question 1: What is the relationship between EMAS and green public procurement?
    Green procurement in the public sector has a twofold role:
    First, suppliers need to comply with the organisation's environmental policy because procurement policies and procedures are part of its indirect aspects.  This is valid for any EMAS organisation.
    Second, procurement policies play an important role in the promotion and proliferation of the scheme. Green public procurement helps to increase organisations' participation in the scheme by turning EMAS into a competitive advantage. And this is where public administrations should set an example.
    Community law offers numerous possibilities to public purchasers who wish to integrate environmental considerations into public procurement procedures. The European Commission has published a guide, the ‘Buying Green! Handbook’, which contains best practice and guidance on green procurement. The guide is available here. Further information on green public procurement is available at: /environment/gpp/index_en.htm

    For additional questions, please contact the EMAS Helpdesk at emashelpdesk@adelphi.de.

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