ISO 50001 will establish a framework for industrial plants, commercial facilities, or entire organizations to manage energy. Targeting broad applicability across national economic sectors, it is estimated that the standard could influence up to 60% of the world's energy use.
ISO 50001 is being developed by ISO project committee (PC) 242, Energy management, with the chairmanship held by the United States.
"Everyday, organizations all over the world deal with issues such as energy supply availability, reliability, climate change, and resource depletion," said Edwin Piñero, ISO PC 242 chair and executive vice president and chief sustainability officer at Veolia Water North America. "A critical element in addressing these issues is how effectively an organization manages its energy use.
"ISO 50001 provides a proven model that helps organizations systematically plan and manage their energy use. With a strong focus on performance and continual improvement, ISO 50001 will contribute to enhanced energy efficiency and prudent energy use. An extremely high level of consensus drove our committee's fast progress toward publication - proof that the world needs and wants this standard."
The secretariat of ISO/PC 242 is provided by the partnership of the ISO members for the United States (the American National Standards Institute - ANSI) and Brazil (Associação Brasileira de Normas Técnicas - ABNT). Forty-three ISO member countries are participating in its development, with another 12 as observers. Liaison organizations include the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) and the World Energy Council (WEC).
The document is based on the common elements found in all of ISO's management system standards, assuring a high level of compatibility with ISO 9001 (quality management) and ISO 14001 (environmental management). ISO 50001 will provide the following benefits:
Roland Risser, chair of the U.S. Technical Advisory Group (TAG) to ISO PC 242, and manager of the Building Technologies Program at the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), said, "This new International Standard provides the structural framework for commercial and industrial companies to continually improve their energy intensity - saving money, improving competitiveness, and reducing pollution. When companies can link efficiency to profitability, that's a win-win."