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Sustainable development

ISO standards and sustainable development

Rio de Janeiro’s 1992 conference put sustainable development clearly on the political agenda. Twenty years on at the Rio+20 event held in June 2012, the international community met again to discuss these issues and drive progress forward. Many of ISO’s 19 500 standards can help businesses and organizations all over the world make progress in the three pillars of sustainable development – the environment, economy and society.

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

Video: ISO and social responsibility

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Articles on this topic

How to measure and evaluate smart community infrastructures

by Maria Lazarte

Our cities and communities are draining the planet’s natural resources. A new ISO technical report on smart communities infrastructures gives practical advice to help us counteract this worrying trend.

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Event sustainability management - ISO 20121 passes 2012 Olympic Games test

by Garry Lambert

Rarely has a new ISO management standard been put to such immediate and successful use as ISO 20121:2012, Event sustainability management systems – Requirements with guidance for use. The 2012 Olympic Games in London was the first major test of the new standard.

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Working together - Partnerships for positive results

by Achim Steiner, Georg Kell, Mark Halle & Ernst Ligteringen

Achieving sustainability requires global, holistic and practical solutions and ISO is working with a wide cross-section of stakeholders, including public and private sector international organizations to make this a reality.

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News archive

ISO 20121 wins at Eurovision

Nobody ever suggested that turning the 2013 Eurovision Song Contest, which brought more than 100 000 visitors to the city of Malmö (Sweden), into a sustainable event would be simple.

ISO standards "drive" innovation and sustainable development

Innovation and the economics of sustainable development" was the theme addressed by high level panels of experts participating in an open session on 20 September at the 35th ISO General Assembly (19-21 September) in San Diego, USA.

US Government standards chief praises ISO's sustainability standards

ISO is making enormous progress in developing standards for sustainability and is taking the lead in this area through standards like ISO 14001 (environmental management) and ISO 50001 (energy management), according to Dr. Patrick Gallagher, the US Under Secretary of Commerce for Standards and Technology and Director of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST).

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

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