ISO (International Organization for Standardization) is further strengthening its commitment to developing standards as practical tools to achieve international sustainability goals through three new initiatives on energy efficiency and renewable energy sources:

  • a high-level profile in the upcoming World Energy Congress, in partnership with the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC);
  • a partnership with the International Energy Agency (IEA), and
  • the selection of priority areas that could gain maximum benefit from the development and use of international standards.

ISO and World Energy Congress

The ISO Fo cus 20th WEC Special
will be published in October

ISO, in partnership with the IEC and the World Energy Council (WEC), is holding a special session on the contributions that international standards can make to energy sustainability goals during the World Energy Congress this November in Rome, Italy, where interdependence and the imperative for energy efficiency are high on the agenda. Special rates have been negotiated for the 157 countries that make up ISO's membership to participate, as well as for IEC members.

In a special issue (to be published) for this event of ISO Focus magazine, ISO Secretary-General Alan Bryden writes: "We invite all leaders, managers and experts from the private and public sectors present in Rome to support and join forces in the much needed collective effort to disseminate and promote, through the development and use of international standards, and as a matter of urgency, good practices and relevant technologies to address this major challenge to the global village.”

ISO and International Energy Agency

ISO is actively cooperating with the International Energy Agency (IEA) to analyze and publicize the current state of play and identify the needs and potential for new developments in international standardization for the promotion of energy efficiency and renewable sources worldwide.

ISO and IEA have developed a joint position paper highlighting the importance of international standards in this domain and encouraging the support and participation of political and business leaders in their development. The paper was submitted as background document for the 2007 G8 meeting.

ISO standards' initiatives

The ISO Council has just launched an ambitious action plan to enhance ISO’s contribution to energy efficiency and renewable energy sources.

Five priority areas have been selected on the basis of their potential contribution to energy saving, the reduction of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and because they can be addressed in the short term.

  • Harmonized terminology and calculation methods on energy efficiency, consumption and savings, as well as for measuring the energy yield of different primary energy sources.
  • Energy management standards to provide a systemic approach to the continual improvement of energy performance for a more sustainable use of energy. They can address energy supply, procurement practices for energy using equipment and systems, energy use, and any use-related disposal issues, for all types of organizations.
  • Liquid and solid biofuels, biomass and biogas, and their sustainable production.
  • Special focus on standards covering retrofitting and refurbishing to help with the upgrading of established installations and systems, such as in buildings and industrial plants.
  • Further development and optimization of ISO’s standardization activities covering the energy efficiency of buildings, ensuring focus, optimal allocation of work among the concerned technical committees and pursuing expeditious development of key work items, such as those dealing with energy performance of buildings in a holistic manner.

Under this plan, special consideration will be given to the specific needs of developing countries.

ISO aims to increase collaboration during the standards’ development process with public policy officials and international organizations such as the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), the IEA, the UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) and the UN Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), among others.

It also seeks to continue and enhance cooperation with the IEC and other standards' development organizations with significant work in this area in order to maximize resources and avoid duplication of effort.