1) Probable format of “Environmental Statement”:
The following are the main aspects which may be covered in the probable format of Environmental Statement:
a. Name and address of the owner/occupier of the industry, operation or process.
b. Date of last environmental audit report submitted.
c. Consumption of water and other raw materials during current and previous year.
d. Pollution generated in air and water along with the output and the types of pollutants and the deviation from standards.
e. Generation of hazardous waste in current year and previous year from processes.
f. Quantity of solid waste generated during current year and previous year and from recycling or reutilization of waste, etc.
g. Disposal practice for different type of waste.
h. Practice in operation for conservation of natural resources.
i. Additional investment proposal for environmental protection including abatement of pollution.
2) Main areas to be covered in the case of environment audit of an industrial unit
a) Layout and design of the factory to provide for the installation pollution control devices with provision for up gradation of pollution control measures to meet regulatory authorities’ requirements. Areas of deficiency to be included in the report.
b) The use of all resources such as air, water, land, energy, raw material and human resources with minimum waste and interlinking for best results to be looked into and reported.
c) It has to be reported whether all pollution control measures in vogue are effective with reference to the type of industry, nature of working and grade of polluting the environment.
d) Availability of adequate trained staff and safety amenities with provision for constant up gradation to be verified.
e) Availability of adequate health care provisions and medical facilities for the workers to be looked into.
f) Availability of proper system to eliminate industrial unhygienic state.
g) Availability of adequate safeguard against occupational health hazards depending upon the nature of industry to be verified.
h) Existence of adequate information system and reporting of compliance of statutory legal provisions to the board at regular intervals to be verified.
i) Compliance of regularly mechanism by way of updating the existing environment system with the latest changes in the regulations to be looked into.
j) It has to be verified as to how social aspects are addressed by the industry as they have an obligation to protect the society from pollution hazards of the industry.
3) Environmental Audit:
a) Environmental reporting deals with the disclosure by an entity of environmentally related data, regarding environmental risks, environmental impacts, policies, strategies, targets, costs, liabilities or environmental performance to those who have an interest in such information as an aid to enabling/enriching their relationship with the reporting entity via either the annual report; a stand-alone corporate environmental performance report; or some other medium (e.g. staff newsletter, video, CD ROM, internet site). The reports that are generated after such audits can be either compliance-based reporting or impact-based performance reporting.
b) Environmental audit deals with verification of information contained in such reports with a view to expressing an opinion thereon.
c) Environmental audit can be performed by external agencies or internal experts (including internal auditors). In practice, environmental audit is not done by a single agency but by various agencies who are experts in the field.
1) Since the subject matter of environmental audit involves multi-disciplinary knowledge and skill, it is preferable to form a team of persons drawn from different disciplines who may assist the chartered accountant in performing the task in an effective manner, generally environmental audits are not required by any statute but are sometimes done at the request of the management to address issues like compliance with environmental laws and regulations, etc.