5 Days
Additional Work:
Nationwide or In-House

Course from £1098.90

+ VAT per delegate

Course Overview

This course is designed to develop delegates auditing skills through their application to an Environmental Management Systems audit of a petrochemicals company.

Participants work in small teams, led by an experienced Lead Auditor as they conduct an opening meeting, plan the audit, interview employees and evaluate the key documentation of the Environmental Management System; to review, analyse and use as they would in a real audit. The culmination of the class is a closing presentation to the senior management of the company.

Participation in the comprehensive and detailed Petros Barola case study includes:

  • Preparing for and conducting a live opening meeting
  • Audit interviews (participation in, and observation of)
  • Gathering objective audit evidence
  • Preparing audit working papers and a draft audit report
  • Audit team meetings
  • Preparing for an conducting a live closing meeting
  • Audit follow up

This course is externally approved and certified by IEMA (the Institute of Environmental Management and Assessment) for external accreditation of Auditors and Lead Auditors (after suitable practical experience).

Delegates who wish to gain audit skills in Safety, Health and Environmental auditing should consider our integrated IOSH SHE audit course.

Target audience

This course is aimed at individuals who wish to undertake or lead environmental audits as part of an EMS such as ISO 14001.

Assessment process

This course is assessed by two methods

  • A course test of 30 short answer questions
  • An In -course tutor assessment of the application of environmental auditing skills


By the end of the course delegates will be able to

Understand and evaluate current environmental issues, their interrelationships and how they relate to the auditing process.

  • Sustainable development policies and strategies
  • Concepts of governance and accountability; public/private/NGO relationships and roles; social and livelihood impacts; community participation and management; common property resources
  • Impact of human activities on the environment.
  • Explain the key global impacts and know the local activities and aspects that cause them (climate change, acidification, ozone depletion, biodiversity loss, resource depletion, energy and water, etc.)

Apply techniques used in the identification of environmental aspects & impacts

  • Preparatory review, aspects/impacts recording
  • Identification of emissions (fugitive and point sources) and wastes
  • Identification of sensitive receptors and Contamination pathways
  • Whole Life Costing - Identifying and evaluating upstream and downstream aspects/impacts
  • Supply and customer chain controlled aspects/impacts
  • Use of tools – checklists, rating systems etc.

Evaluate and explain the significance of environmental impacts

  • Limits of auditor responsibility in assessing methodologies
  • Concern of interested parties, community relations, reputation

Analyse and validate environmental objectives, targets, management and monitoring regimes relating to a range of industry types

  • Organisational structures and their auditing implications
  • Learning lessons from the past
  • Planning for the future
  • Future information collection
  • Respond to change e.g. new production processes, acquisition of new sites, new regulatory or voluntary requirements
  • Site operating procedures
  • Evaluating monitoring and control systems
  • Environmental performance of suppliers
  • Development, management and assessment of objectives and targets;
    • Links to Environmental policy
    • Methods of selection of objectives and targets
    • Quantification
    • Assessment of the validity and achievability of objectives and targets
    • Measuring progress against objectives and targets
    • Auditing the management programme
    • Measuring continual improvement.
  • Management and prevention of abnormal and emergency situations:
  • Preventative and protection measures
  • Preparation for emergencies/ accidents;
  • Contingency planning and testing;

Describe and identify the relationship and differences between a range of audit types

  • Recent developments in interpretation, implementation, integrated systems
  • certification, (EMAS = verification) and registration
  • Purpose and outcomes of environmental audits
  • Types of Environmental Audit including EMS, IMS, Single/multiple issue, carbon, producer responsibility, energy, communication/reports, legal compliance, etc.
  • Differences in 1st/2nd/3rd party auditing.

Evaluate key pieces of environmental legislation and define their relevance in the context of environmental auditing

  • Air, water, waste
  • Hazardous substances
  • Environmental assessment
  • Site operational permits, planning permits

Describe and explain the roles and responsibilities of the auditor, the audit team and other relevant bodies.

  • Roles and responsibilities of:
    • the auditor;
    • Certification Bodies/Registrars;
  • Ethical conduct;
  • Due professional care;
  • Impartiality and independence;
  • Objective audit evidence;
  • Fair presentation.
  • International Standards Organisation;
  • Auditor registration bodies (e.g. IEMA);
  • Code of practice for auditors/verifiers.
  • Benefits of bringing client representatives into an audit team
  • Management Responsibilities

Plan, initiate, implement, manage, monitor and review a broad range of audit programmes.

  • Initiating the audit (objectives, scope and criteria);
  • Appointment of the Lead Auditor;
  • Feasibility of the audit;
  • Selecting the audit team;
  • Initial communication with auditee;
  • Document review;
  • Preparing for the onsite activities (planning, team assignments, H&S, work documents, sampling approach, assurance/confidence level requirements of various legal and other requirements);
  • Onsite audit activities (opening meeting, communication during the audit, roles and responsibilities of guides, collecting and verifying information, audit findings and conclusions, communication after the audit, closing meeting).
  • Preparing the audit report.
  • Reporting the audit (audit report preparation and content, report approval and dissemination, retention of documents etc).
  • Audit completion and follow up (corrective and preventative action).
  • Use of observational, verbal and other evidence
  • Writing non-conformances
  • Evaluation of non-conformance (major/minor). Cultural differences in non-conformance assessment.
  • Scope and Objectives;
  • Responsibilities, resources and procedures;
  • Conducting the audit;
  • Record keeping;
  • Monitoring and review of the audit process.

Demonstrate the main competences required for leading an environmental audit and the main competencies required in an audit team

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