There is an increasing emphasis on sustainability across different industries on a global level. Innovation and technology are driving forces in the development of long-term sustainable solutions, which are needed to overcome challenges in resource availability.

To meet rising water demand, for example, new methods – such as the recycling of used water and desalination of seawater – are being adopted. In the field of waste management, waste collection vehicles – along with sustainable waste storage and disposal facilities – are seeing increased demand.

Sustainability and eco-friendly practices are of especial importance to the energy industry. As the global population increases, affordable power is needed at both the level of individual buildings and national power grids. Energy efficiency is now a key factor in satisfying power consumption.

Conformity assessment has an important role to play in ensuring the safe and effective implementation of environmentally-friendly and sustainable solutions.  

For water, waste, and energy management, testing services are vital. These include non-destructive testing of assets and toxicity studies. Chemical and biological testing may also be required for various purposes, such as verifying the purity of treated water. High compliance standards are essential for water testing services, as the end product could impact the health and ecology in wide areas. The same concerns apply to other forms of environmental testing services, such as air and soil testing.

Products also often require certification; this is to support schemes such as water efficiency product labeling and green product certification. These cater to a growing demand for more environmentally responsible products.

Certification services are another aspect of conformity assessment, which apply to sustainability businesses. These are used to demonstrate compliance to international standards for safety. Relevant certifications include asset management (ISO 55001), quality management system (ISO 9001), and environmental management system (ISO 14001).

Energy management system (ISO 50001) and water efficiency management system (ISO 24526) certifications are commonplace among entities that provide sustainability solutions.

The role of Accreditation/International Standards to Sustainable Environment