Electrical Business

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Pilot project launches for joint Canada-U.S. standards on electrotechnology


July 31, 2013
By Anthony Capkun

July 30, 2013 – The Standards Council of Canada (SCC) and the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) announced the launch of a set of pilot projects that will facilitate the development of joint Canada-U.S. standards in the electrotechnical sector (as well as plumbing/heating sectors).

The pilot projects will focus on new or emerging product areas where neither standards nor regulations currently exist, and where standards development would benefit the greatest number of Canadian and American users.

“As a result of recent stakeholder consultations with Canadian and U.S. industry, SCC and ANSI have agreed to work together to advance Canada-U.S. voluntary standards cooperation and innovation,” said John Walter, SCC CEO. “We are excited to lend our support to this initiative.”

Developing joint standards that serve the public health and safety objectives of Canadian and U.S. regulators will help industry in both countries to avoid inefficiencies and to contain potential development costs, says ANSI. Through pursuit of Canada-U.S. collaborations that propel adherence to a joint set of requirements, maximum benefits for users in both countries can be achieved, ANSI adds.

“In our role as coordinator of the U.S. standardization system, ANSI is pleased to partner with SCC on this project, which will make it easier for products to cross our shared border,” said S. Joe Bhatia, president and CEO of ANSI. “We look to the U.S. and Canadian standards developing community to share their proposals, and to industry in both countries to actively participate in the development of these voluntary standards.”

A selection panel of Canada-U.S. industry representatives, including members of Electro-Federation Canada (EFC) and Canadian Institute of Plumbing and Heating (CIPH)—as well as several U.S. organizations that are being identified—will be formed to evaluate project submissions. Two product categories/topics—one focused on electrotechnology and one on plumbing/heating—will be selected as the subjects of the joint standards pilot projects.

SCC will then solicit proposals from accredited standards development organizations (SDOs), and provide funding as-needed to facilitate the development of joint Canada-U.S. voluntary standards. To be selected, entities must be accredited to develop national standards in both countries, whether as a single SDO with dual accreditation, or through a partnership of U.S.-Canada SDOs. The selection of proposals will be announced in November 2013. Work on the standards is expected to begin in January 2014.

SCC is a Crown corporation and a portfolio of Industry Canada. It represents Canada at the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and oversees the Canadian national committee to the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC).