The EU Eco-Management and Audit Scheme (EMAS) is a management tool for companies and other organisations to evaluate, report on and improve their environmental performance. The scheme has been available for participation by companies since 1995 and was originally restricted to companies in industrial sectors.
Since 2001 EMAS has been open to all economic sectors including public and private services.
In 2009 the EMAS Regulation has been revised and modified for the second time. Regulation (EC) No 1221/2009 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 25 November 2009 on the voluntary participation by organisations in a Community eco-management and audit scheme (EMAS) was published on 22 December 2009 and entered into force on 11 January 2010.
Participation is voluntary and extends to public or private organisations operating in the European Union and the European Economic Area (EEA) ? Iceland, Liechtenstein, and Norway. An increasing number of candidate countries are also implementing the scheme in preparation for their accession to the EU.