VI Environment

OECD Guidelines Chapter 6: Environment

The OECD Guidelines are committed to sustainable development concerning the environment, health and safety. By following these Guidelines you and your employees will benefit from healthy working conditions, you will also be able to achieve financial savings in the long run.

Consider the following:

  • Actively allow for protecting the environment, safety and health.
  • Establish and maintain a management system targeting environmental issues. Make sure that with this system you can collect data, measure objectives, monitor and evaluate. A management system will enable you to actively consider healthy, safety and the environment. By measuring your performances and regularly evaluating your goals, you will be able to grasp what is happening within your business and timely measures can be taken if needed.
  • Provide your staff with adequate education and training on environment, safety and health, for example about working with and around hazardous chemicals, prevention of environmental accidents, drafting environmental impact reports and environmental technology.
  • Provide the local population and workers with adequate, measurable, verifiable (and timely) information on the potential environmental, health and safety impacts of the activities of the enterprise.
  • Assess, and address in decision-making, the foreseeable environmental, health, and safety-related impacts associated with the processes, goods and services of the enterprise over their full life cycle with a view to avoiding or, when unavoidable, mitigating them. Where these proposed activities may have significant environmental, health, or safety impacts, and where they are subject to a decision of a competent authority, prepare an appropriate environmental impact assessment.
  • Take effective measures to prevent or limit damage, taking into account health and safety. Don’t use the lack of full scientific certainty as a reason for postponing cost-effective measures to prevent or minimize such damage.
  • Maintain contingency plans for preventing, mitigating, and controlling serious environmental and health damage from their operations, including accidents and emergencies. When accidents and emergencies occur, you should be able to immediately report to the relevant authorities.

Additionally, it is important to continually seek to improve corporate environmental performance at the enterprise and your supply chain, by:

  1. Adopting technologies and operating procedures in all parts of the enterprise that reflect standards concerning environmental performance in the best performing part of the enterprise.
  2. Developing and providing products or services that have no undue environmental impacts, are safe in their intended use, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, are efficient in their consumption of energy and natural resources and can be reused, recycled or safely disposed.
  3. Promoting higher levels of awareness among customers of the environmental implications of using the products and services of your business.
  4. Exploring and assessing ways of improving the environmental performance of the enterprise over the longer term.