Urban Environmental Management
Cities, EMS and Everything
Putting up a Green Front
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Problems faced in implementing the ISO 14001

While the advantages for local governments in adopting the ISO 14001 seem to be obvious, they do face problems and negative barriers in the process. Some of the trends and issues identified in recent surveys of local governments in Japan include:

  • Apply for ISO 14001 certification for the sake of obtaining the certificate
  • Termination of EMS activities after certificate has been obtained.
  • Initiate new and separate activities for the EMS, rather than modify existing activities to confirm to the EMS
  • Keeping the limit and scope of the EMS small and insignificant
  • Active participation of all staff members and departments are not sought for implementation.
  • Lack of support and appriciation from internal and external stakeholders on the EMS and its development/implementation
  • High goals and expections and targets set in the EMS are not matched by ground reality and action
  • Top management committment and endorsement is not actively sought
  • Focus is on documentation and data gathering for audits, rather than on activities and actions (including a lack of awareness).

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Contact: Hari Srinivas - hsrinivas@gdrc.org