Yours may be one of the many businesses that faces environmental law compliance issues from both the Environmental Protection Agency and the state of Georgia. Because of this, you may decide to take proactive steps to ensure that your company doesn't violate any environmental regulations. As an added benefit, you could streamline your processes and perhaps save some money as well.
The implementation of an environmental management system contains built-in evaluations and reviews that allow your organization to optimize its environmental performance and make sure that it remains in compliance with all applicable laws. You can tailor an EMS to the specific needs of your company, but you may find it useful to understand the basic elements of one as a place to start.
A good place to start
Regardless of the extent of planning that you do for any project, there always seems to be a period of trial and error to refine the process so that it works best for your needs. However, taking the following steps could help you start your EMS:
- Analyze your environmental legal requirements and impacts
- Set goals and objectives to comply with the legal requirements and reduce your environmental impacts
- Create programs designed to meet those goals and objectives
- Make sure employees understand the goals, objectives and plans
- Monitor established programs for efficiency
- Make any needed changes or adjustments to increase effectiveness
- Review the EMS periodically to ensure it continues to meet company objectives and goals
You can add in any specifics needed for your company and particular situation. You may experience some costs with implementation, but once the program is up and running, you may begin to notice the benefits, including potential cost savings.
What benefits you may see
After working out the kinks in your EMS, you may begin to see your company do the following:
- Prevent pollution
- Conserve resources
- Increase compliance
- Increase awareness by employees to environmental concerns
- Improve employee morale
- Improve image with lenders, regulators and the public
- Improve environmental performance
- Reduce costs
- Increase efficiency
You may also find that your customer base grows when others see that you care about the environment and use your resources efficiently.
What support you may need
As the saying goes, "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure," and that applies to implementing environmentally friendly programs as well. Before your EMS can reach its full potential, you need to gain a full understanding of the environmental laws and regulations your company must comply with first. Doing so may require the experience of an environmental law attorney who can help you determine your compliance issues and help you create a plan to meet your legal obligations.