Environmental Management System
An Environmental Management System (EMS) enables a site to identify, monitor and control its impacts on the environment and is at the core of BEPI. Aimed at helping producers to manage its environmental issues in a comprehensive, systematic and documented manner, it creates a structure for continuous improvement in environmental management. This is why EMS is a mandatory environmental performance area for all producers.
Energy Use, Transport and Greenhouse Gases (GHG)
Climate change affects everyone. It also affects businesses, both in the short- and long-term. Production sites consume large quantities of energy, often from fossil fuels. Addressing energy efficiency, reducing GHG emissions and managing transport will reduce risk, cost and environmental impact, ensuring supply chains are equipped to face the challenges ahead.
Water is important, but scarce. Less than 1% of all water on Earth is suitable for human consumption. While populations will continue to grow, the freshwater supply will not. Water availability varies significantly, and businesses’ water management is key to ensuring fresh water continues to be available to everyone.
Wastewater / Effluent
Wastewater, if not managed properly, can be a serious source of pollution. By managing the quality of wastewater released to the environment, producers can manage their impact and therefore risk factors and reputation. Managing the quantity will also reduce operational costs for businesses. Finally, effective wastewater treatment and management will also support the increasing need for clean drinking water.
Emissions to Air
Clean air is equally a concern to everyone as clean water. Certain production processes may cause pollutants to be emitted into the air. It is important producers understand where and when this is the case, and how this can be controlled, to minimise the impact of emissions to air.
Waste generated by production processes not only places a burden on the environment, but can also represent a sizeable operational cost. Reducing waste reduces the amount of raw materials needed to manufacture a product, and reduces the cost and risk of having to manage the storage, treatment and disposal of waste.
Pollution Prevention and Chemicals
Chemicals are used in various parts and stages of the production site, such as production processes, cleaning and maintenance, lab and wastewater treatment. Proper and effective purchasing, handling, storage and use of chemicals is not only key to pollution prevention, it can also help to reduce risk, both to people and the environment. It also reduces cost and improves a producer’s reputation as a responsible company.
Major Incident Prevention and Management
A major incident demands a response beyond the routine, typically the result of factors which the site is unable to influence. While it may not be possible to prevent all major incidents (e.g. flooding due to extreme climate conditions), it is important that the producer assesses and understands possible major incidents, so that appropriate prevention and response mechanisms can be implemented.
Contaminated Land / Soil and Groundwater Pollution Prevention
Mapping and understanding the sensitivity of the immediate surroundings is the starting point for producers to assess potential impact from its processes and activities to soil and groundwater, followed by preventive measures where needed.
As part of a larger community, production sites need to consider the impact of nuisances, such as noise, dust, odour, vibration, smoke, fumes, etc. on their surroundings, and where necessary, take measures to minimise these. By doing so they will reduce risk, avoid cost and improve their reputation.