Environmental Management of Sites
Environmental Management System (EMS) at sites refers to the management of an organization's environmental programs in a comprehensive, systematic, planned and documented manner. It includes the organizational structure, planning and resources for developing, implementing and maintaining policy for environmental protection.
Introduction to EMS
An Environmental Management System (EMS) establishes what an organization needs to do in order to manage itself so as to meet its environmental, economic and social goals. A typical EMS model is represented diagrammatically below.
Based on the P-D-C-A Model, Plan-Do-Check-Act
Typical EMS model
An Environmental Policy for the project will be developed by the Contractors senior management team. The environmental policy, as defined by ISO 14001, is a statement by the organization of its intentions and principles in relation to its overall environmental performance which provides a framework for action and for the setting of its environmental objectives and targets.
It will be communicated to all employees and sub-contractors via site inductions and tool box talks and will be displayed on various notice boards throughout the construction sites. The policy should also be available to the public.
The core document of the EMS is the Environmental Management Plan (EMP). The EMP is the lead environmental management document that defines the procedures for achieving the objectives set out in the Environmental Policy and identified environmental performance targets for the project. The EMP outlines the contractors approach to environmental management throughout the construction phases with the primary aim of reducing any adverse impacts from construction on local sensitive receivers.
Contents of the EMP
The EMP will identify the project management structure and clearly identify the roles and responsibilities with regard to managing and reporting on the construction phase environmental aspects.
An Environmental Risk Assessment will be undertaken when developing the EMP. The risk assessment identifies all aspects of construction that could have an environmental impact and assesses the potential risk and impact of that activity on the environment. Management controls are then devised to eliminate and/or minimize those identified impacts.
The assessment would address the potential impacts created during the temporary construction period (e.g. construction dust and noise) and any permanent impacts (e.g. disturbance to vegetation) that are influenced by construction methods. Specific environmental issues would be addressed in the EMP and strategic details on how these would be controlled across the project would be provided. The list of potential issues that will need to be addressed in the plan are provided below based on information provided in the Environmental Statement.
- Construction noise and vibration management
- Air quality including dust management
- Sustainable waste management
- Archaeology and heritage management
- Water management (surface and groundwater)
- Management and protection of ecological resources (particularly relating to timing of certain works)
- Contaminated land management
The EMP would set out objectives and targets for the project that are realistic and relevant for maintaining or improving environmental performance.
A programme of monitoring, reporting and auditing of compliance in accordance with any obligations of the planning consent, licenses and approvals should also be contained in the EMP to ensure that identified and appropriate control measures are effective.
Editor’s Note: Masters takes pride in being an environmentally responsible organization. Wherever possible we encourage our Clients and Associates to join with us in establishing and managing sites in a safe, healthy and environmentally responsible manner.
Some Environmentally Responsible Activities Undertaken at Site
Water Sprinkling to Control Dust Noise test
Ambient air monitoring
By Plabon Dutta