ISO 14001:2015 specifies the requirements for an Environmental Management System (EMS), allowing us to systematically manage our environmental responsibilities. The methods and processes we devised have been embedded in the company’s day-to-day activities, not simply a ‘box ticking’ exercise.
ISO 14001:2015 helps an organisation achieve the intended outcomes of its environmental management system, which can include:
ISO 14001:2015 is applicable to any organisation, regardless of size, type or nature. At TLJ we felt it important to work towards this important standard, not only because it would benefit our working practices and enhance our reputation but, as a responsible organisation, it was the right thing to do.
For TLJ it meant analysing every part of our operations, then devising and applying a series of processes that could be readily measured and audited. Producing an environmental impact assessment was the starting point, from which a full environmental policy could be generated.
The project covered everything from use of paper in the office to our engineers encountering asbestos when working off site. Aspects included tighter control of electricity consumption and heating in TLJ buildings, purchase of energy efficient appliances, disposal of used office consumables and redundant equipment, environmentally optimised use of company vehicles, and the migration towards a ‘paperless office’ with digital being the default storage medium.
It was far from just a paper exercise however: measures put in place at TLJ’s head office, as part of the EMS, included the installation of battery recycling bins, a full suite of segregated waste recycling bins with a dedicated weekly council collection service, and recycling of old printer cartridges.
Working in an environmentally minded manner when off site was an equally important part of the process. Our field engineers have been equipped with the skills and knowledge to go about their daily business in the most efficient manner possible. These include adopting an environmentally friendly driving style and van sharing (monitored by the use of vehicle trackers), using power tools (in particular in respect of power usage, dust extraction and noise pollution) and the removal of all waste from site in an environmentally friendly manner. The latter is especially important for TLJ as we generate a large number of waste batteries as part of our annual maintenance visits. We now have a dedicated battery recycling service to deal with this aspect.
TLJ’s Claire Martin (pictured above), who headed up the project internally, said:
This was one of the most complex projects I’ve ever delivered at TLJ. As well as renewing our ISO 9001:2015 Quality Management accreditation, which is tough enough, we were venturing into uncharted waters with our ISO 14001:2015 Environmental submission. It was a lengthy and detailed process where we all, including myself, learned a lot. However the months of work have been worth it as we passed the certification process with flying colours! I’m now proud to say that TLJ are worthy holders of these two important and prestigious international standards.