Many organizations seek ways to understand, demonstrate and improve their environmental performance. This can be achieved by effectively managing those elements of their activities, products and services that can significantly impact the environment. This International Standard ISO 14031 sets out a process called environmental performance evaluation which enables organizations to measure, evaluate and communicate their environmental performance using key performance indicators, based on reliable and verifiable information. Environmental performance evaluation can be used to support an environmental management system, or used independently. An organization with an environmental management system in place should assess its environmental performance against its environmental policy, objectives, targets and other environmental performance objectives. This International Standard gives guidance on the design and use of environmental performance evaluation within an organization. It is applicable to all organizations, regardless of type, size, location and complexity. This International Standard does not establish environmental performance levels. It is not intended for use as a specification standard for certification or registration purposes or for the establishment of any other environmental management system conformity requirements. The guidance in this document can be used selectively to achieve and support an organization's own approach to environmental performance evaluation including its commitments to compliance with legal and other requirements, the prevention of pollution and continual improvement, among others. ISO 14031 has been prepared by Technical Committee ISO/TC 207/SC 4 "Environmental performance evaluation" (secretariat: USA) of the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and taken over by Technical Committee CEN/SS S26 "Environmental management" (secretariat: CCMC). The responsible committee at DIN was NA 172-00-02 AA "Umweltmanagement/Umweltaudit" ("Environmental management/Environmental audit") of the Principles of Environmental Protection Standards Committee (NAGUS).