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Council debates EMAS regulation

The Council of the European Communities debated a European Commission proposal for a review of the EMAS regulation, a Community eco-management and audit system, on 11 March 1999.

The proposal - to extend the scope of the scheme to cover organisations in all economic sectors -...
The Council of the European Communities debated a European Commission proposal for a review of the EMAS regulation, a Community eco-management and audit system, on 11 March 1999.

The proposal - to extend the scope of the scheme to cover organisations in all economic sectors - would be based on the existing EMAS scheme, which covers industrial sites and is voluntary.

To promote the concept of sustainable business development, the Council voted for the inclusion of the voluntary international standard for environmental management systems, auditing, ecolabelling, and environmental performance evaluation (ISO 14001) in EMAS, and underlined how EMAS could benefit eco-management and audit systems.

There was also strong support for promoting the participation of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) by facilitating organisations' access to support funds, information, public structures, and eventually by less stringent requirements to SMEs during a start-up period.

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