NEW YORK, Sept. 4, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The American National Standards Institute (ANSI), coordinator of the U.S. voluntary standardization system, and the Interstate Renewable Energy Council, Inc. (IREC) are pleased to announce that three certificate-awarding entities have been accredited under the ANSI-IREC pilot accreditation program for personnel training/education programs within the energy efficiency and renewable energy industries.
The first three certificate-awarding entities to obtain ANSI-IREC accreditation are:
- CalCERTS, based in California, providing training of Home Energy Rating System Raters
- CleanTech Education, based in North Carolina, providing training focused on solar photovoltaics, solar heating, energy efficiency, wind energy, green IT, and smart grid
- Midwest Renewable Energy Association (MREA), based in Wisconsin, providing training related to renewable energy and energy efficiency
The pilot program, which began in January 2012, evaluates certificate-awarding entities against requirements for equipment, curriculum, facilities, administration and personnel set forth in the IREC Standard 14732: 2012, General Requirements for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Certificate Programs. Accreditation under the ANSI-IREC program demonstrates to students, policymakers, funders, and employers that programs have demonstrated meeting all requirements in the Standard. The purpose of accreditation is to determine if these programs meet the requirements for issuing a market-valued certificate. ANSI and IREC expect to launch the full program in early 2013.
The ANSI-IREC Program follows the evaluation process outlined in the international standard ISO/IEC 17011, General Requirements for Accreditation Bodies Accrediting Conformity Assessment Bodies. Under this process, trained assessors review documents submitted by applicants, conduct on-site assessments, and make recommendations to the accreditation committee.
Roy Swift, Ph.D., ANSI senior director for personnel credentialing accreditation programs, says, "This program combines the strength of ANSI and IREC to produce an accreditation program of the highest quality in the field of renewable energy and energy efficiency, providing confidence to consumers that individuals have the knowledge and skills to provide quality services."
"When you converge the requirements in the Standard with the rigor of the accreditation process matched with the expertise of the Assessors, the result is a pretty amazing step to assure market-valued training for the clean energy workforce," says Jane Weissman, IREC's executive director.
"We see a lot of opportunity to grow the solar market and this accreditation will help us work together and make it a reality," says Nick Hylla, MREA executive director. "Receiving this accreditation with ANSI and IREC will make it easier for the MREA to partner with colleges to provide uniform, quality training that accomplishes their goals."
"We believe this accreditation will become the standard of practice for Home Energy Rating Systems (HERS) training, as well as for certificate programs that seek to develop a well-trained workforce that can deliver consistent, reliable results to our Building Performance Energy Industry nationwide," says Michael Bachand, president of CalCERTS.
The American National Standards Institute (ANSI) is a private non-profit organization whose mission is to enhance U.S. global competitiveness and the American quality of life by promoting, facilitating, and safeguarding the integrity of the voluntary standardization and conformity assessment system. Its membership is comprised of businesses, professional societies and trade associations, standards developers, government agencies, and consumer and labor organizations. The Institute represents the diverse interests of more than 125,000 companies and organizations and 3.5 million professionals worldwide.
The Institute is the official U.S. representative to the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and, via the U.S. National Committee, the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC), and is a U.S. representative to the International Accreditation Forum (IAF).
IREC has worked aggressively to break down barriers to renewable energy use since 1982. Throughout its history, the organization has been instrumental in rulemaking for connecting distributed power to the utility grid, quality assessment, workforce development, consumer protection and stakeholder coordination. Since 2005, IREC has been the North American Licensee for the IREC ISPQ International Standard 01022. Today, there are over 115 credentials awarded to training programs and instructors. For more information, visit http://www.irecusa.org.
SOURCE American National Standards Institute