Home

Sustainable development

ISO standards and sustainable development

Rio de Janeiro’s 1992 conference put sustainable development clearly on the political agenda. More than twenty years on, the issue is more relevant than ever. From carbon footprint to community infrastructures and the many environmental challenges that businesses face, ISO has a comprehensive range of standards that can help businesses and organizations all over the world make progress in the three pillars of sustainable development – the environment, economy and society.

Carbon footprint

The carbon (or environmental) footprint is increasingly used by governments and societies as the core indicator of our impact on the environment. But does one size fit all? ISO has produced a briefing note by environmental standards experts that sheds light on the importance of consistency in standards in this field and how they can break down barriers to trade and help to build a more sustainable future.

On this page you will also find topical information and news postings about how ISO standards support sustainable development.

Video: ISO and social responsibility

Related brochures and products

A guide on how to use the GRI G4 Guidelines and ISO 26000 in conjunction

The ISO 14000 family

A basic introduction to the ISO 14000 family of standards.

Leaf icon

Improve your environmental performance with this online collection.

Articles on this topic

ISO opens contest for young professionals in developing countries

You are young, you live in a developing country and you have a story to tell about standards and a sustainable energy future. Then you have the profile to participate in the ISO/DIN essay contest!

Read the full entry

How does your city compare to others? New ISO standard to measure up

A landmark ISO standard outlining key measurements for evaluating a city’s service delivery and quality of life has just been published. Its use will help city managers, politicians, researchers, business leaders, planners, designers and other professionals to focus on key issues, and put in place policies for more livable, tolerant, sustainable, resilient, economically attractive and prosperous cities.

Read the full entry

Paint it green...with ISO standards!

by Clare Naden

6 ISO Standards you never imagined are making our world cleaner, greener and more sustainable.

Read the full entry

News

BMW gears up clean cars with ISO standards

At last a car that is good for the planet! With its all-electric BMW i3, German car manufacturer BMW has successfully brought to market the world's first premium automobile conceived from the ground up for zero-emission mobility.

ISO Store

  • ISO 14001:2004
    Environmental management systems -- Requirements with guidance for use
  • ISO 14004:2004
    Environmental management systems -- General guidelines on principles, systems and support techniques
  • ISO 26000:2010
    Guidance on social responsibility

Visit the ISO Store to buy more standards