11. Jun 2024

New features and what happens next

Aspects of climate change included in the standards for management systems

The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and the International Accreditation Forum (IAF) recognized that the climate crisis and its effects pose major challenges. As a result, ISO and IAF published a joint communiqué on February 22, 2024. This presented the measures - already announced in the so-called 'London Declaration' - on how the most important and relevant management system standards should address climate change issues. These requirements are valid from February 23, 2024.

This communiqué sets out changes to ensure that companies and organizations address these issues. These changes are anchored in chapters 4.1 - Understanding the organization and its context and 4.2 - Understanding the needs and expectations of stakeholders and are as follows

Chapter 4.1: 'The organization shall determine whether climate change is a relevant issue.'

Chapter 4.2: 'NOTE: Relevant interested parties can have requirements related to climate change.

The aim of ISO and IAF is to ensure that, in addition to the issues already addressed, organizations also address the issues of climate change and the resulting impacts that may arise for them.

Effects on organizations

For certified companies, nothing will change insofar as the certificates (as previously issued) will remain valid. The new requirements will be reviewed by auditors in the respective audits.

However, certified companies must ensure that they address the issue of climate change and the resulting challenges. In doing so, the issues (as defined above) should be dealt with in context and the requirements of interested parties should be considered accordingly. Based on these findings, the organization must define measures that are considered appropriate. As with most other topics, the risk-based approach applies here.

What is the next step?

These requirements will be included in all type A management system standards (certifiable standards) - this includes the standards ISO 27001:2022, ISO 22301:2019 and ISO 20000-1:2018 and will subsequently be included in the harmonized structure of Appendix 2 of Annex SL.

In addition, the Auditing Practices Group, an informal ISO group consisting of experts, auditors and users, has issued guidance on how these topics can be queried as examples in an ISO 9001 audit. This guidance can serve as a basis for organizations to query and anchor the above-mentioned topics for themselves.

How does CIS support you?

Our auditors are well prepared to deal with the relevant issues in the audits and to consider and query them in an integrated manner. If you have any further questions, please contact us or the auditor who is dealing with your audit.

Contact us here

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