Environmental Auditing Assignment 3

Topics: Auditing, Audit, Financial audit Pages: 15 (4941 words) Published: October 22, 2013


HES4811
Integrated Environmental Management Systems and Auditing

ASSIGNMENT 03: Environmental Auditing
Assignment Number: 337106

Contents

List of Tables
Table 1: Compliance Audits vs. Management Audits7
List of Figures
Figure 1. Clariant Global Chemical Company’s environmental goals for 2020.12

3.0 Introduction
Environmental auditing’s purpose, its three main categories, and the key steps involved in running an environmental audit are discussed. Setting targets is an important step in the implementation of an environmental management system, and this topic is discussed in Section 4. A representative environmental audit of Phinda Game Reserve is presented in Section 5. The discipline of environmental auditing is an indispensable part of implementing an Environmental Management System.

3.1 The Purpose of Environmental Auditing
Environmental auditing undertakes to inspect, review and assess an organisation in terms of its environmental performance. “If the auditing process does not correct errors and stimulate improvements, then it is a waste of time” (Bunker, 2004). Environmental auditing should “help safeguard the environment and minimize risks to human health” (Coyle et al., 2011) although auditing cannot achieve this on its own, rather it is a management tool designed and carried out with this purpose in mind. According to ISO 14001 (2004), the internal audit will determine whether the Environmental Management System (EMS) conforms to the EMS plans, whether these plans have been correctly implemented and maintained. The audit results must then be supplied to management (ISO, 2004) in order to allow for management reviews and for the rectification or remediation of any problems encountered during the audit. Environmental Auditing will assist in determining how well an EMS and the equipment and processes planned and put into operation as part thereof, are performing, and whether a company is complying with environmental regulations. In addition it will minimize the exposure of humans to environmental risks (Coyle et al., 2011). Furthermore, it can show that an organisation “is aware of its impact upon the environment through providing feedback”, will increase environmental consciousness and responsibility with the organisation’s stakeholders and will generally lead to a more efficient use of resources and to monetary savings (Scottish Natural Heritage, 1996). Implementing an EMS without performing Environmental Audits will not be effective. Previously planned environmental projects and improvements could be abandoned while the company has given itself a good conscience through implementing the EMS, while it is neglecting to implement goals and not meeting targets. An audit will ensure management awareness and accountability for the environmental wellbeing and influence of the company. 3.2 Three Main Categories of Environmental Audits

3.2.1 Introduction
Environmental audits can be categorised under: liability audits, management audits and activity audits. The Department of Environmental Affairs and Tourism (2004) lists six main types of environmental audits: Environmental Management Audits, Environmental Compliance Audits, Environmental Assessment Audits, Waste Audits, Environmental Due Diligence Audits and Supplier Audits. A combination of two or more of these audits is known as a comprehensive audit (INTOSAI Working Group on Environmental Auditing, 2007). 3.2.2 Liability audits

These are performed when a company will be liable for fines and penalties which issuing authorities will impose should they not be in compliance with environmental laws and regulations applicable to the company. A liability audit evaluates and reports on whether the company has observed all environmental laws and regulations (DEAT, 2004). A liability audit can also include establishing a future strategy for maintaining compliance (Council of Science and Technology...

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