Environmental Management Systems – A Step-By-Step Guide to Implementation and Maintenance from C Sheldon & M Yoxon

Title: Environmental Management Systems – A Step-By-Step Guide to Implementation and Maintenance 
Author: C Sheldon & M Yoxon
Publisher: Third Edition, Earthscan, London
ISBN No.: ISBN 13 978 1 844072 57 6
Year of Publication: 2006
Website: http://www.earthscan.co.uk

This is a first class guide to help companies and managers plan and implement the introduction of an environmental management system onto a site. The book is self-explanatory, makes clear reference to both EMAS and ISO 14001:2004 and provides “insider secrets” (actually practitioners hints) to oil the path of implementation.

The authors go to the trouble of clearly explaining how the reader can use the book, practically, and most importantly, what needs to be done. In addition to the “how to use the book” first section, the book is split up into the comfortable “Set Up/Plan/Do/Check” model approach with each chapter starting with a very useful “ISO/EMAS quick check” covering the area of the EMS being dealt with and the specific sections of ISO 14001 and EMAS to be dealt with. Questions posed in the executive chapter summary help the user to ensure that they have completed the chapter requirements before they move on to the next chapter.

I was really impressed with the “Trade Secrets” section. Comments like the following, “…Staff have been known to suffer from ‘initiative fatigue’ if there are too many business projects going on at once. Try and get a prioritization of all management initiatives to avoid competition…” Yes, common sense and everyone knows about it, deep down, but it needs to be clearly stated. Also very useful is the “you are here” diagram map at the beginning of each chapter which shows clearly at what stage the reader has reached in the “Set Up/Plan/Do/Check” model.

The authors have included plenty of templates, model forms and explanatory tables which help the reader to navigate through the morass of tasks using tools which are tried and tested. The book has an excellent little glossary at the end to help with the buzz words. My one minor criticism would be that the book lacks a robust and thorough index which really rounds off any good “how to do it” publication.
Excellent EMS Guide well worth purchasing. It can also be used effectively as a training tool and any trainer worth his salt should easily be able to turn this into an EMS training curriculum and training framework – highly recommended.

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