The year in events

An overview of key events attended by IEC management

By Claire Marchand

Every year the IEC organizes and participates in a number of events, promoting IEC activities, engaging stakeholders and staying on top of the latest developments in electrotechnology and beyond. Below is a selection of events attended by Central and Regional Office management in the past 12 months.

GSEP promotes sustainable energy development via electricity sector projects and training programmes for developing nations
GSEP promotes sustainable energy development via electricity sector projects and training programmes for developing nations

GSEP - energy solutions for the future

IEC joined the heads of the world’s leading electricity companies in discussions on the theme of innovation and the energy systems of new generation at the recent GSEP (Global Sustainable Electricity Partnership) annual summit in Moscow, Russia.

The IEC was represented by Past President Jacques Régis and Katharine Fraga Pearson, IEC Head of Governance and Global Strategy. Participating in the session "Global Energy Systems of the New Generation" Régis said that the IEC provides a global platform that enables technologies, both existing and new, to be used in the best way for maximum performance reliability. The development of IEC International Standards, for example, for UHV (ultra-high voltage) and RE (renewable energy) helps to advance global energy systems of the new generation.

For GSEP members, future energy solutions need to address the priorities of ensuring security of supply while providing affordable energy that is sustainable and environmentally friendly. One such solution is the creation of flexible and adaptive energy systems consisting of several key elements: Smart Grids and energy storage well integrated with electricity generation and distribution systems, regional energy hubs and long-range ultra-high voltage lines.

IEC International Standards are fundamental for these innovations and other new technologies to be realized.

IEA/IEC/ISO - Meeting the energy challenge

The IEC co-hosted a workshop, together with IEA (International Energy Agency) and ISO(International Organization for Standardization), on International Standards in support of EE (energy efficiency) and RE (renewable energy) policies. Held in Paris, France, on 13 March 2014, the workshop brought together around 100 participants – policymakers, international standardization organizations, industry and other key stakeholders – to address how they can work more closely together on these two key aspects of meeting the energy challenge.

The workshop participants stressed that only when private and public stakeholders work hand-in-hand will it be possible to put in place technology-independent decision-making processes, well-designed policies and the right technology systems. As part of these efforts, International Standards are essential to create the certainty and clarity needed for market development and to allow investors to develop viable business models. In addition, a combination of effective energy policies and private sector investment in clean technologies is needed to move towards more sustainable energy systems.

Africa Utility Week

IEC General Secretary and CEO Frans Vreeswijk was a speaker at the 2014 African Utility Weekwhich took place in Cape Town, South Africa, in May. The event brought together power and water professionals from over 70 countries, 30 of them in Africa.

In his speech he explained that African countries have the opportunity to do things smarter than some of the industrialized countries, which had developed their power systems in isolation. “It is of crucial importance that national grids are built and regulated in a way that allows them to connect with others, beyond borders,” he said.

For Vreeswijk, the good news is that African countries are beginning to work together and that power grids include  a mix of energy, taking advantage of what is most reliable and affordable. “Several power pools are starting to cooperate. East African power pools have developed a grid code based on International Standards,” he told his audience. Vreeswijk also called for more investment in off-grid small-scale electricity generation.

Asia-Pacific regional events

37th PASC Meeting

IEC President Junji Nomura and IEC Affiliate Country Programme Leader Phuntsho Wangdi joined IEC-APRC (Asia-Pacific Regional Centre) Regional Director Dennis Chew at the 37thPASC (Pacific Area Standards Congress) meeting in Kuala Lumpur on 5-9 May 2014.

The meeting was attended by senior representatives from 19 countries in the Asia-Pacific region. One of PASC's key objectives is to facilitate collaboration between the grouping and international bodies such as IEC, ISO and ITU.

Nomura gave an update on the IEC Masterplan implementation, the Young Professionalsprogramme and the systems approach to standardization. The IEC Affiliate Country ProgrammeLeader presented how the IEC is enhancing support to developing countries by introducing the IEC Mentoring Programme for Affiliates and the IEC ACAS (Affiliate Conformity Assessment Status), while the IEC-APRC Regional Director presented IEC activities in the region.

PASC encouraged its members to participate actively in the IEC Affiliate Country Programme, the IEC Young Professionals Programme and to inform the IEC-APRC Regional Director where promotional and technical support is required by member countries.

Asian Electronics Forum

AEF (Asian Electronics Forum), which took place in Tianjin, China, in November 2013, is an annual event where Asian electronics industry associations gather together to discuss and exchange views on important issues affecting the industry in Asia. It was the first time the IEC was invited and given an opportunity to present to the industry at the public forum section of the AEF, which was attended by more than 250 delegates. A presentation was made on the value of IEC International Standards and Conformity Assessment Systems. The IEC has been invited to the next AEF in Hong Kong in 2014.

EMSD Symposium

EMSD (Electrical and Mechanical Services Department), Hong Kong’s regulator of electrical and electronic equipment, uses IEC International Standards and accepts IECEE CB test certificates.

In January 2014, the IEC was invited to deliver a presentation at the EMSD Symposium on Electrical & Mechanical Safety and Energy Efficiency, to create awareness and enhance confidence in IEC International Standards and the IECEE CB Scheme for its stakeholders. The conference was attended by more than 300 engineers from government bodies, utilities, academia and industry.

APEC and ASEAN – Dialogue at regional and national level

The IEC regularly participates in APEC (Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation) and ASEAN(Association of Southeast Asian Nations) fora on electrical and electronic equipment to update regulators on the latest developments in the IEC and encourage the harmonization of technical regulations based on IEC International Standards. In ASEAN, IEC International Standards are used directly or adopted as national standards in the implementation of the ASEAN Harmonized Regulatory Regime for Electrical and Electronic Equipment by 2015.

Latin America regional events

Latin America Smart Grid Forum

The Latin America Smart Grid Forum, which took place in São Paulo, Brazil in November 2013, brought together around 400 participants. IEC-LARC Regional Manager Amaury Santos andIEC MSB (Market Strategy Board) Secretary Peter Lanctot represented the IEC.

The main objective of the event was to monitor global technological progress in the Smart Grid field, to synthesize results and to devise an action plan to create conditions for the implementation of those technologies. The plan called for the mobilization of solution providers, energy companies, regulatory and government policy agents, financial agents, consumers and society in general.

The first two days of the Forum focused on issues related to global best practices, such as regulatory and market practices and success stories, government involvement, public-private partnerships, funding sources, involving smart technology applications in critical infrastructure sectors in the entire generation, transmission, distribution and consumption business chain. The third day was dedicated to a workshop on Public policies and incentives for the infrastructure modernization in Brazil.

The event was a great platform for Santos to apprise the audience of IEC activities in general and in the Smart Grid field in particular. In his presentation, entitled International Standards and interoperability, he gave an overview of IEC activities, its management and technical structure and, together with Lanctot, introduced the audience to the IEC Smart Grid Standards Map.

Strong IEC representation at COPANT annual meetings

In April 2014, IEC General Secretary and CEO Frans Vreeswijk, IEC Vice-President and SMB(Standardization Management Board) James E Matthews III and IECEE Executive Secretary and COO Kerry McManama joined Amaury Santos in Havana, Cuba, for a week of COPANTmeetings.

In his speech at the COPANT General Assembly, Vreeswijk gave delegates an update on IEC activities and focused on how the IEC can help support sustainable economic development.

Santos participated in two workshops. The first one, on the theme Building the Future of Standardization in COPANT, gave him the opportunity to present the IEC Young Professionals Programme. Together with McManama, he also attended the workshop on Strengthening the Conformity Assessment Infrastructure in the Americas. McManama participated in a panel discussion that dealt with regional and international initiatives to enhance cooperation and ensure that conformity assessment services are available to all countries in the Americas.

Gallery
GSEP promotes sustainable energy development via electricity sector projects and training programmes for developing nations GSEP promotes sustainable energy development via electricity sector projects and training programmes for developing nations
The IEA/IEC/ISO workshop on International Standards in support of energy efficiency and renewable energy policies brought together about 100 participants The IEA/IEC/ISO workshop on International Standards in support of energy efficiency and renewable energy policies brought together about 100 participants
Every year the IEC organizes and participates in a number of events around the world Every year the IEC organizes and participates in a number of events around the world