10 Top Tips for a great Environmental Policy
All organisations should have an Environmental Policy. It’s a great way to communicate with customers; particularly in the B2B supply chain, they often ask for the policy & supporting data.
The benefits of having a policy include:
- Shows commitment to good environmental management
- Embeds the environment into core business practices – finding efficiencies & cost savings, reducing pollution, saving energy & addressing climate change
- Shows leadership & links to executive responsibility
- Simply communicates to stakeholders (including staff & customers)
- Helps drive change & keep up momentum.
Your Environmental Policy is often people’s first introduction to your environmental activities. So, remember to make it interesting, relevant and available.
But where do you start?
Here are my 10 Top Tips on how to write a great Environmental Policy:
- The policy is meant for everyone to see, so make sure it’s easy to read and understand – not too dry or filled with jargon.
- Keep it short – one A4 sheet is enough.
- Readers should be able to understand clearly what your main impacts are and how you are committed to managing them.
- Make it realistic, achievable and relevant to your activities and practices.
- Include an introduction to your organisation & how you are committed to managing your environmental impacts.
- Include your environmental objectives, which should reflect your main activities & their impacts – e.g. energy in buildings, fuel use in company cars, packaging, materials, waste, air pollution, resource depletion or climate change. Make sure you include legalisation issues.
- The policy should be signed and endorsed by the MD or the Board.
- Regularly review the policy and update it as necessary.
- There’s no point producing the policy & no one knows about it. Put the policy on your website; send it to clients & prospects; raise awareness amongst staff.
- Remember, if it’s in the policy, you must act upon it – so make sure objectives are supported in your Environmental Management System or action plan.
Still sounds daunting? Need some more help?
Eshcon has helped loads of organisations with ISO 14001 Environmental Management Systems, SECR carbon reporting & ESOS energy audits. Contact me so I can help you – firstname.lastname@example.org
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