Transitioning Your EMS from ISO 14001:1996 to ISO 14001:2004

Wilk, Lisa; Esty, Paula
(Capaccio Environmental Engineering, Inc., Marlborough, MA)

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The ISO 14001:2004 & ISO14004:2004 revisions were released for publication on November 15th, 2004. ISO (International Organization for Standardization) and the IAF (International Accreditation Forum) are allowing an 18-month transition from the publication of the revised standard. Beyond this period, certificates for ISO 14001:1996 version of the environmental management system (EMS) standard will be invalid, and the IAF will only recognize certificates for ISO 14001:2004 version of the EMS standard. Therefore, companies already registered to the ISO 14001:1996 version will need to upgrade their current systems to comply with the new requirements of the ISO 14001:2004 standard. Also, companies that have not yet registered to ISO 14001, should be using the ISO 14001:2004 standard for developing and implementing their EMS. This paper will review the requirements of the new standard, including changes from prior standard, as well as provide guidance on transitioning to the new standard and using this as an opportunity for improving your EMS. Case study examples from the transition process of semiconductor manufacturers are included in the presentation.

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