ISO 14001:2015 states that organizations when determining environmental aspects and impacts should consider the lifecycle of its products and services. ISO 14001:2015 uses the word “consider” because each organization must be aware of its context. A small organization has little power or impact over suppliers. A small organization has little influence over its customers and/or customers’ customers.
Consider the example of a large organization with a big brand power and with its production subcontracted. If one or more of those subcontractors has no concern for the environment and generates pollution, the big brand has a risk of reputational damage because for consumers the manufacturer is invisible it is only the brand that counts. Acting proactively to improve the environmental aspects may open a lot of opportunities for improving efficiency, reducing wastes and environmental costs.