3.1    Environmental Aspects Overview

The primary goal of Coulsonís Environmental Management System (EMS) is to ensure that our organization identifies and addresses its significant environmental aspects in a manner consistent with ISO 14001 (2004) International standard.

Environmental aspects are elements of an organizationís activities, products or services that can interact with the environment.  A significant environmental aspect is one that has or can have a significant environmental impact. Significant environmental aspects include legal requirements, as compliance with environmental legislation is a key objective of the Coulson Group EMS, the Environmental Policy and ISO 14001 (2004).

ISO14001 (2004) requires that an organization establish and maintain procedures to identify the environmental aspects of its activities, products or services that it can control and over which it can be expected to have or can have an influence, in order to determine those which have or can have significant impacts on the environment. The organization shall ensure that the aspects related to these significant impacts are considered in setting its environmental objectives.

During the development and registration of the EMS, the Coulson Group of Companies completed detailed, documented process of identifying and determining the significance of its environmental aspects.  The identification of environmental aspects is an ongoing process that involves all Coulson mangers, employees and contractors.   Environmental aspects typically arise as new or changed conditions arise in operations, or as the result of changes in legislation, regulations or organizational structure. 

As new environmental aspects are identified, they are to be documented and suibmitted to the EMS database using the Environmental Aspect Identification Form. The significance of environmental aspects is to be determined using the Coulson EMS Risk Assessment Process (RAP).  If the RAP determines that an environmental aspect is significant, the EMS must be updated to address the new aspect as required.

Significant environmental aspects are listed in Section 3.4.  It is the responsibility of the Environmental Manager to review the list of environmental aspects annually to ensure the list is current, accurate and complete.  Maintaining a complete and accurate list of significant environmental aspects is important to the effectiveness of the EMS.  ISO 4001 (2004) requires adequate awareness, operational controls, procedures, monitoring and communications be in place to address significant environmental aspects.