Using Environmental Management For Businesses
Human beings depend on nature for various purposes like food, water, clothing, shelter and even the air to breath. But, the unintended impacts of human actions are now creating a number of environmental issues like global warming, tropical deforestation, toxic waste disposal, ozone depletion and so on. These environmental issues, in turn, cause increased awareness of the importance of environmental ethics, pertaining to the moral relation between human beings and their natural environment (Stewart, p. 154), and increased awareness of the importance of minimizing the impacts on environment arising out of the activities of manufacturing industries, supply chains, transportation, government etc.
Manufacturing industries and business organizations cause major environmental issues and therefore effective Environmental Management has recently been viewed as imperative for businesses. This piece of research paper is an attempt to address the need and importance of environmental management for businesses, and outline the benefits of using such management system for business organizations.
As Barrow noted, environmental management, a significant part of environmental ethics, is a system of efforts that attempt to minimize the negative environmental impacts of the products and services that a business is related with (p. 33). When companies are manufacturing large volume of goods by using of various technologies, it causes major issues of waste disposal, toxic wastes, air, water and environmental pollution and so on that in turn ultimately cause major environmental issues of global warming, ozone depletion etc. the fundamental concept of environmental management is that negative impacts of organizational activities on its environment should be minimized, energy to be saved, waste to be disposed effectively or to be renewed and environmental pollution to be avoided. In a broader sense, environmental management system that a business implements not only saves human beingsâ€™ life, but also, keeps sustainable environment for animals, species and all others living beings in the earth.
Environmental management is essentially a significant part of business ethics and corporate social responsibility, because, the operation of the business should never be harmful to the environment and social life. Ryding emphasized that a business, when it is socially responsible and ethical, must have commitment to keep sustainable environment. He suggested that a good corporate citizen must be socially and ethically committed to conduct operations in order to avoid serious damage to the environment and social life (p. 536).
Business organizations, regardless of small or large, nationals or multinationals, should set up a system approach, by taking a group of people to be involved in and by setting certain organizational goals and standards to be achieved by them in order to make the company more ethical, socially responsible and morally committed to its environment (Tinsley, p. 2).
In recent days, green business concept, environmental management and ISO 14001 have gained significant attention among the corporate giants. ISO 14001 is a specific and systematic international standards for environmental management, providing a framework on how a business can implement environmental management at corporate levels. The environmental management in a business can be effectively implemented if there are well defined policies, good communication among its members, strong desire from the management and social and ethical commitment towards sustainable environment.
Importance of using environmental management for businesses
The environmental management at corporate levels would be a system approach aligned with strategies, actions and managerial activities that aim at eliminating the impacts of business operation and its products or services on the environment. There are large numbers of electronic machines, plastic products, household goods, food items and chemicals that cause major pollution to the environment or dispose toxic and dangerous wastes or even cause major health issues to the humans. By effectively implementing the environmental management system or ISO 14001, these pollution and environmental issues can be eliminated up to a greater extent and can do justice to the occupants of the earth, including humans, animals and all other living beings. It shows that environmental management at business level can obviously help enhance environmental ethics.
Businesses today face rigorous competition from counterparts that causing them to put any potential efforts that can help them achieve competitive advantages. Businesses require environmental management as an effective tool for achieving its competitive advantages because customers that they face are increasingly aware of environment and products and services that are environment-friendly.
To be more specific, a business that fails to meet specific requirements of its customers pertaining to providing goods and services that are conforming to the environmental ethics, will lose its market. In contrast, a business with effective environmental management will eventually be socially responsible, ethical and thus to be able to achieve competitive advantages too. It also can be perceived that environmental management is helpful for businesses to create customer loyalty and reputation through satisfying their needs.
Secondly, environmental management helps maintain healthy communication among the members of the organization, because people or workforce of the business are more likely to like working environment that are goods for their health and work and this in turn motivate them to perform in their works. Thirdly, by implementing effective environmental management system and by conforming its standards to that of ISO 14001, it can be certified as ISO 14001 that gives greater values in international relations.
Waste minimization, energy saving and effective waste disposal are some of the positive aspects of implementing environmental management for businesses. Waste minimization and effective waste disposal can help the business become socially more responsible, especially among the people who live nearby the business. These both result cost saving to the business as well, because, by minimizing wastes and through better disposal methods, the company will be able to cut its costs down. Environmental management encourages energy saving, that not only helps reduce pollution to the nature, but also cut down expenses of the business.
Ethics is perhaps one of the hot buzzwords of today. Ethics relates to both business and environment. This piece of research work integrated environmental ethics and business ethics, detailing how environmental ethics can be enhanced by businesses through an effective environmental management system. This research paper has highlighted key benefits of implementing environmental management for the businesses.