Posiva Oy awarded an environmental certificate
On 7 February 2010, DNV Certification Oy awarded Posiva an environmental certificate based on the ISO 14001:2004 standard.
The certificate was presented on Wednesday in the ONKALO research tunnel, which has already reached a depth of 396 metres. "This demonstrates Posiva's responsible environmental management already before the actual final disposal operations," says Reijo Sundell, President of Posiva, on the significance of the certificate.
In recent years, an environmental management system conform to the ISO 14001 standard has been established for Posiva. The standard's requirements include surveying the environmental impact of the company, assessing significant environmental aspects, introducing an environment policy, clearly describing responsibilities, as well as setting and monitoring quantitative environmental objectives.
The environmental certificate proves Posiva's responsible operation methods and the company's ability to take care of the well-being of the environment according to the company's environmental policy. Posiva's major environmental aspects in normal operations are related to ONKALO's construction, field research, waste handling, and the use of energy. "The most important thing here is that all personnel take responsibility for environmental matters, instead of just some individuals being responsible for such matters," says Sundell.
The environmental system will be annually assessed, and the company has to demonstrate that operations have been developed and improved according to the set objectives. Quality engineers Satu Ruoho and Antti Mustonen, present at the certificate presentation, say that Posiva has, of course, had a well-functioning environmental system since the beginning of the millennium; that is, environmental matters have been observed in the company's operations throughout the entire excavation of ONKALO, for example. "We will use the system to take care of well-planned and continuous development of environmental matters," Sundell points out.
Posiva has previously been awarded a quality certificate conform to the ISO 9001:2000 management system standard. In regular auditing in January 2010, the quality certificate was updated to match the ISO 9001:2008 standard. "Obtaining certificates is often a three-step process which begins from a quality certificate, progresses to an environmental certificate, and is concluded by occupational healthcare and industrial safety matters being consistent with the OHSAS 18001 standard," says Mustonen. In fact, Posiva's management system is currently being developed with regard to requirements for occupational healthcare and industrial safety.