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Call for increased cooperation on energy efficiency standards


April 26, 2009
By Anthony Capkun

Cooperation on international standards to promote energy efficiency and reduce carbon emissions was given a boost by a workshop in France in March that brought together 290 experts from the public and private sector. The workshop was jointly organized by the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC), International Energy Agency (IEA) and International Organization for Standardization (ISO).

The workshop confirmed that key players in the energy sector consider
international standards essential instruments to support the
implementation of energy efficiency practices. The experts underlined
their commitment to contribute to and collaborate in the development of
these standards.

The gathering provided an opportunity to develop an overview of work
that has to be done on energy efficiency and for technical experts and
public sector decision-makers to exchange information and map out the
path forward. In particular, the importance of energy efficiency
standardization was emphasized and how it can support carbon emissions
reduction by providing internationally agreed metrics.

Presentations and discussion panels provided insights on the
requirements and challenges related to energy efficiency and related
standardization work in a variety of fields: industrial systems, power
generation, buildings, electrical and electronic appliances, networks
and data centres, transport and energy management.

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“We need to be able to generate, transmit and distribute more
electricity with reduced impact, and we need to use electricity more
intelligently,” said IEC general secretary and CEO, Aharon Amit, “While
the IEC continues to issue the standards for existing technologies,
including energy efficiency for industrial and domestic uses, it is
also working on new areas including ultra-high-voltage transmission and
integrated smart grids, while continuing to maximize the potential from
renewable energies.”

IEA and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development
(OECD) predict that the world energy demand will increase by 45%
between now and 2030 without remedial action.

Among the main recommendations of the workshop were the following:

• Highlight and promote the complementary relationship between public
policies and technical standards, communicating clearly that standards
provide technical solutions.

• Encourage participation from the earliest stages in the standards
development process of all stakeholders (particularly representatives
of public authorities and consumers) having relevant interests in
promoting energy efficiency and reducing carbon emissions.

• Improve coordination and optimize involvement of experts in ongoing
standardization work at the sectoral, national, regional and
international levels, ensuring exchange of information and promoting
the use of already existing standards.

• Adjust standardization processes and deliverables to be more adaptive
in addressing fast-moving technologies and evolving usage contexts of
products and services.

“Energy efficiency is here, but not easily seen. However, once metrics
are developed, it becomes possible to give visibility to energy
efficiency,” said Pieter Boot, director of the IEA’s Directorate of
Sustainable Energy Policy and Technology. “Making energy efficiency
visible is the first task to giving it commercial value, but this is
only partly complete. Technical standards allow efficiency to be
defined, measured and evaluated. They are the foundation of all policy
and private sector actions to reduce energy intensity.”

CLICK HERE to visit the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC).

CLICK HERE to visit the International Organization for Standardization (ISO).

CLICK HERE to visit the International Energy Agency (IEA).



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