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Definitions page

Actions -

Any initiative undertaken to meet a target. Within the EMS, there are two general types of actions: project and behavioral/administrative actions.

Activities -

Mission support activities conducted by small units or installation offices, including shops, ranges, hangars, hospitals, and offices.  An example of an activity is equipment maintenance.

Applicable Legal Requirements -

Legal requirements promulgated and enforced by federal, state or local government authorities applicable to MCAS Miramar's practices and environmental aspects.

Aspects –

Characteristics of a practice that can cause an impact to environmental resources.  Examples of aspects are the production of solid waste such as oily rags, recyclable wastes such as used oil, and the potential to spill or release hazardous materials such as oil, fuel or solvents.

Audit -

Systematic, independent and documented process for obtaining audit evidence and evaluating it objectively to determine the extent to which the audit criteria are fulfilled

Audit Criteria -

Set of policies, procedures or requirements against which audit evidence is compared

Audit Evidence -

Records, statements of fact or other information which are relevant to the audit criteria

Audit Findings -

Results of the evaluation of the collected audit evidence against audit criteria; audit findings can indicate either conformity or nonconformity with audit criteria or opportunities for improvement

Audit Plan -

Description of the activities and arrangements for an audit

Audit Program -

Set of one or more audits planned for a specific time frame and directed towards a specific purpose; an audit program includes all activities necessary for planning, organizing and conducting the audits

Audit Scope -

Extent and boundaries of an audit; the audit scope generally includes a description of the physical locations, installation units, activities and processes, as well as the time period covered

Auditor -

Person with the competence to conduct an audit

Behavioral/Administrative Action -

Actions planed and implemented within MCAS Miramar CO's means, such as realigning existing roles and responsibilities, developing EMS procedures, and providing training.

Comprehensive Environmental Training and Education Program (CETEP)-

In recognition of the magnitude and importance of the environmental training challenge, the Deputy Chief of Staff for Installations and Logistics established the Comprehensive Environmental Training and Education Program to meet the environmental training objectives published in the 1997 USMC Environmental Campaign Plan titled Comprehensive Environmental Training and Education Program (CETEP).  CETEP was approved at the highest levels by both the Marine Corps training and environmental functional commands.

CETEP was established to support the Marine Corps goal of full compliance with state and federal environmental requirements and Marine Corps pollution prevention goals. CETEP incorporates the application of established Marine Corps training and leadership concepts and procedures to characterize and address the environmental training challenge systematically.

CETEP includes various needs analyses, professional development initiatives, public outreach projects, program development strategies, and research efforts to ensure that appropriate environmental instruction and information is provided at all levels of the Marine Corps."

Centrally Managed Environmental Program (CMEP) -

The CMEP account funds both the environmental management and environmental projects programs at the installation level:

CompTRAK -

The Marine Corps database that tracks installation's environmental compliance requirements and cost data.

Conformance -

A facility is in conformance with established EMS criteria when it meets all applicable EMS requirements, has conducted an internal EMS audit, and self-declares conformance (see section 2217).  HQMC-sponsored external audits validate the self-declaration.  Note that a facility may be considered to be in conformance with Marine Corps EMS criteria if it has one or more minor non-conformances, as long as it establishes and implements a Plan of Action and Milestones (POA&M) to correct each non-conformance.

Continual Improvement -

Recurring process of enhancing the environmental management system (3.8) in order to achieve improvements in overall environmental performance (3.10) consistent with the organization's (3.16) environmental policy (3.11)

Corrective Action -

Generally, a reactive process used to address problems after they have occurred

Department-level Nonconformance -

A nonconformance isolated to a particular unit, area or function within MCAS Miramar. Examples could include: failure to properly train unit personnel, improper waste handling within a unit, failure to conduct environmental inspections, etc.

Document -

Information and its supporting medium

Describes core elements of the environmental management system and their interaction and provide direction on where to obtain more detailed information on the operation of specific parts of the environmental management system.  Documents may include:

  • process information
  • organizational charts
  • internal standards
  • site emergency plans
    • NOTE 1 The medium can be paper, magnetic, electronic or optical computer disc, photograph or master sample, or a combination thereof.
    • NOTE 2 Adapted from ISO 9000:2000, 3.7.2.

Document Control -

All actions taken regarding the documents from creation to final disposition, including creation, retention, storage, revision, version control, disposal, and permanent archiving.


A systematic approach for integrating environmental considerations and accountability into day-to-day decision-making and long-term planning processes across all missions, activities, and functions.  The EMS institutionalizes processes for continual environmental improvement and reducing risks to mission through ongoing planning, review, and preventive or corrective action.

EMS Appropriate Facility -

Reference (d) defines an EMS appropriate facility as a host command and its tenants within an installation fence line demarking contiguous property, as well as any satellite properties under direct control of the installation CO.  The appropriate facility may encompass multiple noncontiguous fence lines under direct control of the CO or even the entire area of responsibility of the regional commander.  An appropriate facility may also be defined as a major-mission tenant command when the command in question elects to define its component command EMS separate from the respective host activity EMS.

EMS Audit -

A systematic and documented verification process that objectively obtains and evaluates evidence to determine whether an installation’s EMS conforms to the USMC EMS conformance criteria and is effectively implemented.

EMS Team -

The EMS Team will provide installation-wide oversight and support to the EMS implementation effort.  Currently, the EMS Team consists of members of Environmental Management Department including division directors and the Assistant Environmental Management Officer. EMS Team members may designate deputies within their units to work with the EMS Coordinator and Environmental Management Department staff to gather, organize, and disseminate information; develop procedures; and advise, coordinate, facilitate, and monitor EMS implementation. Provides an oversight of the EMS, EMS development and EMS implementation.

Environment -

surroundings in which an organization (3.16) operates, including air, water, land, natural resources, flora, fauna, humans, and their interrelation.

  • NOTE Surroundings in this context extend from within an organization (3.16) to the global system."

Environmental Aspect -

Element of an organization's (3.16) activities or products or services that can interact with the environment

  • NOTE A significant environmental aspect has or can have a significant environmental impact (3.7)."

Environmental Impact -

Any change to the environment (3.5), whether adverse or beneficial, wholly or partially resulting from an organization's (3.16) environmental aspects (3.6).

Environmental Management Program -

This program provides CMEP funds to installations for either one-time funding for non-recurring requirements or emergent non-recurring requirements.

Environmental Objective -

Overall environmental goal, arising from the environmental policy, MCAS Miramar sets itself to achieve, and which is quantified where practicable.

Environmental Performance -

Measurable results of an organization's (3.16) management of its environmental aspects (3.6)

  • NOTE In the context of environmental management systems (3.8), results can be measured against the organization's (3.16) environmental policy (3.11), environmental objectives (3.9), environmental targets (3.12) and other environmental performance requirements."

Environmental Policy -

Overall intentions and direction of an organization (3.16) related to its environmental performance (3.10) as formally expressed by top management

  • NOTE The environmental policy provides a framework for action and for the setting of environmental objectives (3.9) and environmental targets (3.12)."

Environmental Projects Program -

This program provides CMEP funds to installations for major repair (M2) and minor construction (R2) environmental projects.

Environmental Target -

Detailed performance requirement, quantified when practicable, applicable to MCAS Miramar, that arises from the environmental objectives and that needs to be set and met to achieve those objectives.

Executing Agent -

In some cases, responsibilities for ownership, supervision and operation of practices do not fall within a single chain of command, for instance when operations are contracted. It is the responsibility of the owning command to ensure that supervisory and operational procedures for practice control are assigned to its executing agent and enforced.

Executive Order (E.O.) - 

A direct order signed by the President under his constitutional authority as Chief Executive, specifying responsibilities and actions required by Executive Branch agencies.

Facilities -

Land resources, buildings, installations, structures, public works, equipment, aircraft, vessels, and other vehicles and property owned by, constructed for or by, or manufactured for the purpose of leasing to the Marine Corps.

Impact -

Any change to the environment, whether adverse or beneficial, resulting from the aspects.  Standard Marine Corps impacts are maintained in the PAI Module of the EM Portal.

Interested Parties -

Individual(s) or group(s) concerned with or affected by the environmental performance of MCAS Miramar. External interested parties may include regulators, local residents, insurers, customers, environmental groups, emergency response services, residential associations, other government bodies and the general public.

Internal Audit -

Systematic, independent and documented process for obtaining audit evidence and evaluating it objectively to determine the extent to which the environmental management system audit criteria set by the organization (3.16) are fulfilled

  • NOTE In many cases, particularly in smaller organizations, independence can be demonstrated by the freedom from responsibility for the activity being audited."

Land Use and Military Construction Branch, Headquarters, Marine Corps, CMC(LF) -

The Land Use and Military Construction Branch ensures the Marine Corps has sufficient land resources and facilities to accomplish its mission, and that its land, along with any improvements, is utilized in environmentally responsible ways.

Logistical Sustainability (JP-4 definition of Sustainability) - 

The ability to maintain the necessary level and duration of operational activity to achieve military objectives.  Sustainability is a function of providing for and maintaining those levels of ready forces, materiel, and consumables necessary to support military efforts.

Major Nonconformance - 

A major weakness within the EMS that could cause the system to fail, and may not be correctable before the next management review.  Major nonconformances are tracked as findings in ACE Online and include the following:

  • Failure to address an EMS element.
  • Failure to implement a key procedure.
  • Failure to correct, or demonstrate steps to prevent the recurrence of, previous non-conformances.
  • Multiple (systemic) minor non-conformances noted in one EMS component.

Management Review -

Periodic review of the management system by senior leadership (EMS Team) followed up by actions, including changes to the EMS as indicated by the review.

Minor Nonconformance -

An EMS shortcoming that should not, by itself, cause the EMS to fail and that can be corrected before the next management review.  Minor nonconformances are tracked as discrepancies in ACE Online, and may consist of:

  • Failure to address some (but not all) parts of a requirement/element in an installation's procedures.
  • Failure to implement some parts of a procedure.
  • Inconsistent or inaccurate implementation of a procedure.

Nonconformance -

Failure to conform to USMC EMS Conformance Guide standards, applicable legal, and/or base requirements (e.g., operating procedures, management reviews, etc.)

Objective -

A statement that defines an end-state, supporting goals of the Environmental Policy Statement.  Objectives must be achievable and measurable, and should be quantifiable when practicable.

Operational Plan Submission, OPS -

A report submitted annually to CMC(LF) by each installation requesting CMEP Environmental Management Program funding from CMC(LF).

Organization -

Company, corporation, firm, enterprise, authority or institution, or part or combination thereof, whether incorporated or not, public or private, that has its own functions and administration

  • NOTE For organizations with more than one operating unit, a single operating unit may be defined as an organization."

Other Applicable Requirements -

Other requirements to which MCAS Miramar subscribes, such as DoD, DON, Marine Corps, and installation-level environmental requirements, etc. that apply to Miramar's practices and environmental programs.

Owning Command -

The command aboard the installation that has ultimate responsibility for a practice.

Owning Commands Point of Contact (POC) -

A position or individual designated by the owning command who defends his/her organizations interests in the EMS and coordinates between his units and personnel and other stakeholders in the EMS.

Owning Unit -

The lowest organizational unit that operates a practice. Owning commands designate owning units.

Practice -

A unit process or operation that supports the mission and has aspects that can impact environmental resources.

Practice Controls -

Procedures that are followed or physical barriers put in place to eliminate negative impacts to the environment.  An example of a practice control is the shop procedure for managing used oil or the spill containment berm.

Practice Operator -

Individual who operates a practice.

Practice Owner -

The command, unit, or office responsible for day-to-day use of a practice.  Practice owners have the authority to accomplish or support their mission by using the practice and, thus, have the responsibility for procedures needed to keep it under control. 

Practice Owners -

Command unit or office responsible for the day-to-day use of a practice.  The Sergeant or Staff NCO who runs daily operations of the maintenance bay ensures that the practice owner's responsibilities are met.

Prevention of Pollution -

Use of processes, practices, techniques, materials, products, services or energy to avoid, reduce or control (separately or in combination) the creation, emission or discharge of any type of pollutant or waste, in order to reduce adverse environmental impacts (3.7)

  • NOTE Prevention of pollution can include source reduction or elimination, process, product or service changes, efficient use of resources, material and energy substitution, reuse, recovery, recycling, reclamation and treatment."

Preventive Action -

Generally a proactive process intended to prevent potential nonconformance before it occurs or becomes more serious; focuses on identifying negative trends and addressing them before they become significant

Procedure -

Specified way to carry out an activity or a process NOTE 1 Procedures can be documented or not.

  • NOTE 2 Adapted from ISO 9000:2000, 3.4.5. EN ISO 14001:2004 Licensed Copy: opuphrsp opuphrsp, Open University The JISC, 25 November 2004, Uncontrolled Copy, (c) BSI"

Program Objective Memorandum, POM -

Biennial submission to CMC(LF) by each installation reporting installations' program objectives and costs. POM data is used to develop the Five Year Defense Plan.

Programming, Planning, and Budgeting System, PPBS -

This process through which all Marine Corps resource requirements, including the environmental program, are identified, justified, and funded.

Projects -

Actions that require external funding requested through CompTRAK or other Planning, Programming and Budgeting System mechanisms. Examples of projects include P2 investments, infrastructure investments, and externally-funded studies or plan development.

Record -

Provides procedures for identification, maintenance, disposition of records, and records the extent to which planned objectives and targets have been met.  Records may include:

  • information on applicable environmental laws or other requirements
  • complaint records
  • training records
  • process information
  • product information
  • inspection, maintenance, and calibration records
  • pertinent contractor and supplier information
  • incident reports
  • information on emergency preparedness and response
  • information on significant environmental aspects
  • audit results
  • management reviews

Requirement -

Legislation, regulation, or policy issued by any Executive, Federal, State, local, DOD, Department of Navy, or Marine Corps authority that addresses environmental considerations and requires action by Marine Corps personnel. 

Risk to Mission -

Potential or actual impacts on mission readiness resulting from the occurrence of aspects of practices operated aboard Marine Corps facilities.  Mission impacts occur through four risk pathways:  environmental impacts, adverse regulatory exposure, adverse public perception, or health and safety impacts.


Standard Accounting and Budgeting Reporting System. SABRS is the official accounting system for the United States Marine Corps.

Self-Audit -

A systematic, documented, objective and comprehensive environmental compliance review of installation processes, facilities, and practices to be completed within a 12-month period. Installation personnel or their designees conduct the internal assessment per Marine Corps Order P5090.2A, Chapter 4.

Self-Audit Plan -

The installation's plan, coordinated with tenants, that describes how a comprehensive self-audit will be accomplished within the "fence line" over the course of a year.

Significant Aspect / Significant Environmental Aspects -

An aspect determined by the installation to potentially result in a significant environmental impact, using a documented procedure that takes aspect risk scores into account. 

Significant Practice / Significant Environmental Practices -

A practice determined by the installation to potentially result in a significant environmental impact, using a documented procedure that takes practice risk scores into account.

Standard Operating Procedure(SOP) -

A written procedure that instructs practice owners in the environmentally sound operation of practices.  SOPs should be integrated into existing technical procedures or manuals for operation of practices, when feasible, but may need to be distributed or posted in the work place as separate documents.

Sustainability -

Defined in Chapter 1 of MCO 5090.2.

Sustainable Practices - 

Section 2 of reference (b) directs Federal agencies to implement sustainable practices for:

  • improvement in energy efficiency and reduction in greenhouse gas emissions,
  • use of renewable energy,
  • reduction in water consumption,
  • sustainable acquisition,
  • reduction of the use and disposal of toxic and hazardous chemicals and materials,
  • pollution and waste prevention/diversion and recycling programs,
  • high performance and sustainable buildings,
  • vehicle fleet management, and
  • electronics stewardship.

System-level Nonconformance -

A nonconformance which may affect multiple units, areas or functions or MCAS Miramar as a whole.  Examples could include:  Failure to achieve EMS objectives and targets, failure to follow established internal communications procedures, failure to maintain records in accordance with applicable records retention requirements, etc.

Target -

A detailed performance requirement that sets a limit, usually a quantity and/or a time frame, for the achievement of objectives.  An objective may have more than one target.


The most important starting point for an EMS* is the development of an environmental policy. ISO14001 requires local governments to implement their own environmental policy. The environmental policy acts as a basis for the environmental management system.


ISO14001 requires that an environmental management system is planned properly. It requires the organization to consider the following carefully: Environmental Aspects; Legal and Other Aspects; Objectives and Targets; and an Environmental Management Program.


The two requirements for implementation of an EMS is to define, document, and communicate roles, responsibilities and authorities, and to allocate the resources needed to implement and control the EMS.


The key requirement in this EMS step is to regularly monitor and measure key characteristics of activities and operations that could have a significant impact on the environment. Changes to EMS procedures may become necessary in order to deal with nonconformances with the EMS, with mitigating environmental impacts, or corrective and preventive action.


The management review process ensure that information is collected to enable management to carry out proper review. Top management review the need for changes to policy, objectives and targets, and ensure that a commitment to continual improvement is being demonstrated.

Marine Corps Air Station Miramar-EMS