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EMS and performance



Jeff,
Can an EMS (ie.ISO 14000) provide management a performance-based standard if
total cost accounting is used to provide transparency of financial
environmental performance of corporate identified indicators?

Best Wishes,
Donald Sutherland


-----Original Message-----
From: Jeff Cantin <jcantin@erg.com>
To: p2tech@great-lakes.net <p2tech@great-lakes.net>
Date: Thursday, October 12, 2000 12:08 PM
Subject: Fwd:Re:EMS and performance


>
>
>
>
>Much though I respect my good friend and colleague Bob Pojasek, I must
>respectfully disagree. To say that ISO 14001 is not a performance-based
>standard
>is to restate the obvious. No one who knows anything about it ever claimed
it
>was. Criticisms such as that, and most particularly those of Profepa, are
based
>on deliberate obfuscation and do more harm than good.
>
>ISO 14001 is a systematic process for making environmental decisions that
steps
>an organization through a process of identifying and prioritizing its
>environmental issues, determining its own commitments and taking
responsibility
>for its environmental activities, implementing a program to meet its
>commitments, putting in place the operating procedures needed to meet those
>commitments and systematically reviewing and improving tis performance.
that is
>all it is, but that is a great deal.
>
>The problem with ISO 14001 is not in the standard but in its
implementation.
>Sure, it can be implemented in a minimalist manner that only ensures a
>plaque on
>the wall. This should not blind us to the fact that many companies have
done
>much more than that and that ISO 14001 has guided many companies in
improving
>fundamentally the way they address environmental issues. In a recent
>benchmarking study we undertook with the Conference Board we found that the
>recent management systems improvements made by most companies relate
precisely
>to ISO 14001 elements, making their management programs more systematic,
more
>predictable and integrating them in business systems.
>
>Will ISO 14001 improve performance overnight? Not necessarily, because it
>targets a fundamental long-term cultural change within the organization.
Can it
>be implemented in a minimalist manner? Yes. But, can it fundamentally
>change how
>a firm looks at environmental issues and result in much greater long-term
>improvements in performance? Absolutely, if it is implemented properly and
>coupled with a true commitment to environmental imporvement by the
>organization's management.
>
>One last point. We all (the public, stakeholders, governments, industry)
>have to
>be informed consumers. We have to look beyond ISO 14001 certifcation to see
it
>has been properly used. This is our responsibility, not the standad's.  If
>I buy
>a wrench to put together my son's tricycle, I don't crictize the wrench
because
>it is not a tricycle, and I don't expect my son to be delighted with the
new
>wrench he got for Christmas. ISO is a tool to improve performance, its does
not
>itself guarantee that performance will improve. But it sure is easier to
put
>together that tricycle with a wrench than without one. (Actually my
>youngest son
>is now in college so he probably would not be delighted with a tricycle in
any
>case).
>
>
>Richard P. Wells
>The Lexington Group
>110 Hartwell Avenue
>Lexington, MA 02421
>http://www.lexgrp.com
>phone: 781-674-7306
>fax: 781-674-2851
>
>