Environmental Management System (EMS)
The Council's Environmental Management System or EMS, effectively sets standards for continually improving the Council's environmental performance and implementing best practice initiatives.
In November 2005, the Council's EMS was certified in accordance with the International Standard AS/NZS ISO 14001:2004, by independent auditors, TQCS International.
An EMS is a management tool that assists the Council to control the impact of its activities on the environment, over which it has direct control. This includes areas such as:
- stormwater management;
- minimisation of waste going to land fill;
- pollution prevention;
- water use; and
- energy use.
The EMS demonstrates the Council's commitment to sound environmental management with targets and objectives set for regular reporting, which demonstrate what is being achieved. It builds on the corporate actions already identified in the City's State of the Environment Report, Greenhouse Strategy Action Plan and Waste Management Action Plan.
Work practices such as brick-cutting and oil disposal, are audited at least annually to ensure they comply with the EMS. If not, changes are made or further training organised. New spill response kits have been purchased for the Council's Depot operations to contain liquid materials in the event of a spill.
As part of the process, an Environmental Sustainability Policy has been endorsed by the Council.
The EMS is a corporate management system with the following key objectives:
- Demonstrate legal environmental compliance.
- Communicate to staff and other stakeholders the importance of compliance with the Environmental Sustainability Policy, procedures and requirements and their relevant roles and responsibilities.
- Ensure commitment to changing attitudes or activities that impact on the environment to integrate sustainability principles.
- Reduce adverse environmental impacts of the Council's operations, improve efficiency in the use of resources and decrease waste.
- Ensure regular reporting on environmental performance as a basis for improvement and implementation of best practice initiatives.
- Demonstrate leadership in the Community.
The overall system is reviewed annually to keep abreast of changes in legislation and the Council's operations such as awarding of new contracts. Comments or suggestions from the Community are welcomed.
Re-certification in 2008
The Council achieved re-certification to ISO 14001:2004 by the Certification Approval Panel of TQCS International on 3 November 2008, following a four-day Triennial audit of the Council's EMS documents in October 2008, conducted by external auditor, TQCS International. This certification follows external audits being conducted by TQCS International twice a year since November 2005, to confirm that the Council's EMS is an accordance with the Standard.
For further information please contact the Council's Sustainability Officer on 8366 4532.