06/07/00 – MSWG, EPA Host Learning Together Conference
06/02/00 – UNC Releases Database, Public Report
04/22/00 – Executive Order Requires Government EMSs
04/05/00 – US EPA Announces EMS in Local Govt Participants
03/27/00 – US TAG Votes against ISO 14001 Revisions
03/25/00 – MSWG Calls for New Environmental Infrastructure
03/16/00 – Pacific Institute Releases ISO 14001 Report
03/13/00 – Draft Performance Track Proposal Available from EPA
03/10/00 – MSWG Elects Officers, Discusses Registration Process
02/03/00 – EPA Releases Report on EMSs and Municipalities
01/31/00 – Kentucky to Host Next MSWG Meeting on March 9-10
01/26/00 – MSWG National Conference Scheduled for San Diego
01/14/00 – EMS Research Summit Papers Available on CSG Website
01/07/00 – EPA Releases Draft EMS Action Plan
12/13/99 – MSWG Issues Statement on EMSs and Compliance
11/24/99 – International Paper Forests Receive ISO 14001 Certificate
11/11/99 – GRI Receives Grant for Performance Measurement
11/03/99 – MSWG, Brookings Institute Host EMS Research Summit
10/16/99 – Ford, GM Require Suppliers to Be ISO 14001 Certified
10/11/99 – California Will Host Next MSWG Meeting. . .
10/03/99 – Michigan Plans Four Innovations Projects
09/29/99 – EPA Commissions Study on ISO Registration Process
09/17/99 – MSWG Holds Quarterly Meeting in Oregon
09/03/99 – MSWG Cosponsors EMS Research Summit
08/30/99 – Summary of Pacific Institute ISO Workshop Released
07/30/99 – MSWG Hosts Second Annual National EMS Workshop
06/29/99 – Connecticut Passes EMS Bill
06/07/00 MSWG, EPA Host Learning Together Conference
On June 5-6, MSWG and EPA hosted the 3rd annual Learning Together conference. The conference, which was held in San Diego, focused on EMSs in government and the role of sustainability in management systems.
Learning Together Website
06/02/00 UNC Releases Database, Public Report
On June 6, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and the Environmental Law Institute officially released the first version of the National Database on EMSs as well as a public report on the database project. The database, which is funded by US EPA, features baseline data for fifty facilities that are implementing EMSs.
National Database on EMS
Second Public Report on the National Database Project
04/22/00 Executive Order Requires Government EMSs
Through an Executive Order, President Bill Clinton is requiring federal agencies to manage their environmental impacts. Among the requirements is the development and implementation of an EMS and assuring compliance with environmental laws.
Greening the Government Report (PDF)
04/05/00 US EPA Announces EMS in Local Govt Participants
The US EPA is entering the second round of its EMS in municipalities project. Fourteen participants from around the country were slected. Participating municipalities range from sewer authorities to city governments to state agencies.
Project Press Release
03/27/00 US TAG Votes against ISO 14001 Revisions
During its meeting in Dallas last week, the US Technical Advisory Group voted to recommend no changes to ISO 14001 and 14004. US TAG is the United States representative to Technical Committee 207 which oversees the ISO 14000 series. TC 207 will meet in Stockholm in June. MSWG has recommended specific changes to the standard regarding pollution prevention, commitment to compliance and public reporting.
MSWG’s ISO Language Change Recommendations
03/25/00 MSWG Calls for New Environmental Infrastructure
MSWG has sent a memo to various foundations and businesses requesting funding for an EMS Policy Academy and research on systems approaches to environmental management. The memo from MSWG Research Task Team Chair Peter Wise cites articles presented at the EMS Research Summit last November.
See the memo
03/16/00 Pacific Institute Releases ISO 14001 Report
The Pacific Institute, an MSWG member, recently released a paper titled, “Managing a Better Environment: Opportunities and Obstacles for ISO 14001 in Public Policy and Commerce.” The paper covers topics like the role of EMSs in regulation and the effect of EMSs on global commerce.
03/13/00 Draft Performance Track Proposal Available from EPA
“A Summary of EPA’s Performance Track Proposal” is now available on-line for comment. EPA is proposing a national program to recognize and encourage facilities that achieve better environmental performance than is required by existing regulations. The Agency will be hosting a series of workshops outlining the proposal and soliciting comments from stakeholders.
Performance Track Website
03/10/00 MSWG Elects Officers, Discusses Registration Process
During its March quarterly meeting in Kentucky, the MSWG elected a new slate of officers and heard presentations by ANSI and RAB on the ISO 14001 registration process. The working group also discussed the Commission for Environmental Cooperation’s forthcoming EMS framework and EMS efforts in Kentucky.
March Meeting Summary
02/03/00 EPA Releases Report on EMSs and Municipalities
The US Environmental PRotection Agency’s Offices of Wastewater Management and Compliance have released a final report detailing the findings of their EMS and municipalities pilot project. The report, titled “The US EPA Environmental Management System Pilot Program for Local Government Entities,” is the culmination of a two-year pilot project to examine the applicability and benefit of an EMS on environmental performance, compliance, pollution prevention and stakeholder involvement in local government operations.
Pilot Project Website
01/31/00 Kentucky to Host Next MSWG Meeting on March 9-10
The next MSWG meeting will be in Lexington, Kentucky on March 9 and 10. Travel information is available through the MSWG website.
March MSWG Meeting
01/26/00 MSWG National Conference Scheduled for San Diego
The MSWG 2000 conference will be held at the Bahia Hotel in San Diego, California on June 5 and 6. The conference will cover a variety of topics, from basic information on implementing an EMS to detailed information on EMS developments at all levels of business and government. MSWG is currently working to finalize the agenda.
1999 MSWG Conference Website
01/14/99 EMS Research Summit Papers Available on CSG Website
The Council of State Governments (CSG) has posted papers presented during the EMS Research Summit on its website. CSG and the MSWG are working do develop a research strategy for EMSs.
EMS Research Summit Website
01/07/00 EPA Releases Draft EMS Action Plan
The U.S. EPA has released a draft EMS Action Plan for public comment. The Action Plan was developed by a cross-agency workgroup to implement the Innovations Task Force Report recommendation on promoting EMSs. Comments on both the overall direction of the plan and on individual elements and actions are welcome. The U.S. EPA would like to receive comments by January 31, 1999.
U.S. EPA’s EMS Website
U.S. EPA’s Draft Action Plan
12/13/99 MSWG Issues Statement on EMSs and Compliance
MSWG reviewed and accepted a statement on the effect of EMSs on compliance. The document, while stating that EMSs do not guarantee compliance, asserts that properly implemented systems can have a positive influence on compliance and environmental performance.
EMSs, Environmental Performance, and Compliance
11/24/99 International Paper Forests Receive ISO 14001 Certificate
International Paper announced that 4.7 million acres of its forestland have received third party verification to both ISO 14001 and the Sustainable Forestry Initiative for its management practices.
11/11/99 GRI Receives Grant for Performance Measurement
The United Nations Environmental Programme received a grant totaling more than $3 million to support the Globabl Reporting Initiative (GRI), an international effort to develop environmental, economic and social performance measures for businesses. GRI was convened by the Coalition for Environmentally Responsible Economies in 1997. The grant comes from the United Nations Foundation, which contributes money to international social programs.
11/03/99 MSWG, Brookings Institute Host EMS Research Summit
On November 2-3, 1999, representatives from academia, industry, government and the environmental communities gathered in Washington, DC to discuss an EMS research strategy. Over the two days, various papers covering environmental, business and social impacts of EMS were presented by leading academics. Within the next three months, the conference sponsors (including MSWG, the US EPA and the Brookings Institute) will use the conference in developing an EMS research strategy.
EMS Research Summit
10/16/99 Ford, GM Require Suppliers to Be ISO 14001 Certified
On September 9, Ford became the first U.S. company to require ISO 14001 certification by first tier suppliers. Within two weeks of Ford’s announcement, General Motors issued a similar announcement. Both are requiring certification by 2003.
Ford’s Press Release (on E-Wire)
GM’s Press Release (on E-Eire)
10/11/99 California Will Host Next MSWG Meeting on December 9 and 10
The next MSWG quarterly meeting will be in Oakland, California on December 9 and 10. An agenda for the meeting is still being developed. California will also be the site of the 3rd Annual National EMS Workshop.
10/03/99 Michigan Plans Four Innovation Projects
At the October meeting of the Environmental Council of Governments, Michigan unveiled a plan to pursue four regulatory innovation projects: eliminating liability for lenders who fund redevelopment or voluntary cleanup projects under RCRA, allowing municipal sewer operators to receive a state stormwater permit in lieu of upcoming federal rules, setting presumptive technology requirements for certain air permits rather than requiring best available control technology, and placing federal review of state air standards on a parallel track with the state’s review.
9/29/99 EPA Commissions Study on ISO Registration Process
EPA has signed a contract with the National Academy of Public Administration to study the ISO 14001 registration process. NAPA’s study will concentrate on issues like auditor qualifications and the auditing process. The study is scheduled to be completed by next fall.
09/17/99 MSWG Holds Quarterly Meeting in Oregon
MSWG held its quarterly meeting in Portland, Oregon on September 13 and 14. Representatives from Oregon’s Department of Environmental Quality gave a presentation on their Green Permits system. The working group also discussed the relationship between EMSs and compliance and the use of EMSs in permits. The next MSWG meeting will be in Oakland, California on December 9 and 10.
Minutes from Oregon Meeting
Oregon’s Green Permits
09/03/99 MSWG Cosponsors EMS Research Summit
MSWG has partnered with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of Reinvention, the Council of State Governments, the National Academy of Public Administration and the Brookings Institution to present a national EMS Research Summit in Washington, D.C. on November 2 and 3. A 40-person core group will prsent and formally comment on nine scholarly papers on EMS research.
CSG’s EMS Research Summit Website
08/30/99 Summary of Pacific Institute ISO Workshop Released
The Pacific Institute released a summary of the proceedings from a July workshop on ISO 14001. ISO 14001 Environmental Management Systems and Public Policy included presentations from the Pacific Institute, the US EPA, the California EPA and the Tulane Institute for Environmental Law and Policy.
ISO 14001 Environmental Management Systems and Public Policy: Workshop Proceedings (PDF)
07/30/99 MSWG Hosts 2nd Annual National EMS Workshop
MSWG and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recently hosted their second annual EMS workshop, entitled “Learning Together.” About 250 participants from the private and public sectors gathered for discussions on EMSs and their future in the United States.
Official Learning Together Website
06/29/99 Connecticut passes EMS bill
Governor John G. Rowland signed a bill into law authorizing the state’s Department of Environmental Protection to fashion a program around ISO 14001 and international sustainability principles like the Natural Step and CERES. The bill would allow the Department to provide benefits like reduced reporting and facility-wide permits to program participants.
Connecticut’s Act Concerning Exemplary Environmental Management Systems