How ISO standards support sustainable development and contribute to sustainable action is the theme of the January issue of ISO Focus+, the magazine of ISO (International Organization for Standardization).
The magazine highlights the work already done by ISO for the development of standards for business, government, manufacturers and consumers and features the work in progress in the field of sustainable development.
The choice of sustainability as the magazine's main theme marks the run-up to the Rio+20 conference in June 2012, which will be the 20th anniversary of the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED), also known as "the Earth Summit". Since then, the importance of sustainability has grown and International Standards such as those developed by ISO are paving the way towards a more sustainable world.
Environment, economy, society – ISO’s current portfolio of more than 19 000 standards provide solutions in all three dimensions of sustainable development.
This issue of ISO Focus+ provides examples of how ISO is working with a wide cross-section of stakeholders, both in private and public sectors. In addition articles by four leaders of some of well-known international organizations illustrate how ISO standards serve as practical tools to achieve benefits in three dimensions.
Among the articles, one focuses on ISO 26000, which provides guidance on social responsibility, and shows how the standard has become, just over a year after its publication, one of the world’s most important and widely accepted initiatives in the field.
In another article, Chairs of ISO technical committees developing standards sectors such as maritime, buildings, plastics and earth-moving machinery explain how ISO standards make a positive difference in their industry by incorporating sustainability considerations.
The magazine also features an exclusive interview with Dr. Wolfgang Grosse Entrup, head of Environment and Sustainability of Bayer, AG., who explains how International Standards help Bayer in its commitment to sustainable development: ”ISO standards are essential for recording comparable performance indicators in individual areas of sustainability. On this basis, we are able to identify potential improvements which we can then implement.”
A combination of consumer sentiment, public policies and government commitment is addressing global sustainable challenges. The January issue of ISO Focus+ provides a broad perspective on ISO’s activities for helping the world community progress towards sustainable development.
ISO Focus+, January 2012