ANSI became a signatory to the Pacific Accreditation Cooperation (PAC) Multilateral Recognition Arrangement (MLA) on greenhouse gas validation and verification during the PAC Plenary Meeting in Guadalajara, Mexico, on June 26, 2014. ANSI is one of just four accreditation bodies to become a signatory to this newly launched MLA.
During the June PAC Plenary, ANSI also renewed its status as a signatory of the PAC MLA on product certification, which was initially granted in July 2007 [see related news]. Eighteen accreditation bodies have signed this MLA to date.
Mutual recognition of product certification reduces duplicative conformity assessment costs for importers and exporters on a global scale.
The PAC is an association of Accreditation Bodies and other interested parties that are established and operate in the member economies of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC). PAC's objectives are to facilitate trade and commerce among APEC economies, within the system of global recognition of programs for conformity assessment.
Bodies accredited by the MLA signatories are recognized as operating equivalent programs in accordance with international requirements - ISO/IEC 17065 for product certification bodies, and ISO 14065 for greenhouse gas validation and verification bodies (V/VBs). In other words, the marketplace can have the same confidence for certification bodies or V/VBs accredited by one signatory as in those accredited by other signatories. For ISO 14065, the peer evaluation does not include GHG program-specific requirements, as each country currently has unique GHG reporting requirements. In the future, it may be possible to include harmonized GHG program criteria to the MLA over time.
In order to become an MLA signatory, a PAC accreditation body member must undergo a peer assessment by the other signatories that ensures fulfillment of the criteria in ISO/IEC 17011, Conformity assessment - General requirements for accreditation bodies accrediting conformity assessment bodies.
"The PAC MLA is a very significant milestone for the credibility of ANSI accreditation, and it is a signal accomplishment to be in the vanguard among the first signatories to the inaugural PAC MLA for GHG," said Lane Hallenbeck, ANSI vice president of accreditation services. "This recognition represents the dedicated efforts of our staff to evidence the Institute's competence by successfully completing a rigorous assessment from our peers."
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.
ANSI is a U.S. representative to the International Accreditation Forum (IAF) and 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).