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Using environmental management systems (EMS) processes as a common planning tool – a case study from Sustainable Silicon Valley

Genevieve Carruthers

NSW Department of Primary Industries, Email


Using a systematic management process outlined in the international standard for environmental management systems (ISO 14001), businesses participating in the Sustainable Silicon Valley (US) project have developed common understanding of environmental impacts of their business operations, set targets to meet communally agreed outcomes addressing key risks and share their management methods, tools and the outcomes they are achieving. Key targets areas of reductions in greenhouse gas emissions, energy use and water use have all been addressed in the first instance and monitoring demonstrates that reductions greater than the regional averages in all three target areas are being achieved. This case study examines the use of EMS as a collaborative target setting, management and monitoring process, using examples from Silicon Valley and other areas to highlight the approaches taken.

Key Words

Environmental management systems, Silicon Valley, climate change, community planning

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