ANSI and IREC Launch Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Accreditation Program

January 22, 2013 by Jeff Shepard

The American National Standard Institute (ANSI) and the Interstate Renewable Energy Council, Inc. (IREC) are pleased to announce that the ANSI-IREC program for the accreditation of renewable energy and energy efficiency certificate programs has completed its pilot phase and is now accepting general applications. The program, which began in pilot form in January 2012, evaluates certificate-awarding schools, colleges and other institutions against requirements for equipment, curriculum, facilities, administration, and personnel set forth in the IREC Standard 14732: 2013, 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 and provides third-party verification that certificate programs have demonstrated meeting the requirements for issuing a market-valued certificate. Students who have graduated from an ANSI-IREC accredited program will improve the quality of work in the marketplace and help to establish benchmarks for the renewable energy and energy efficiency sector.

Successful applicants will join three organizations currently accredited against the prestigious 14732 Standard: CalCERTS, Midwest Renewable Energy Association, and National Solar Trainers 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."

IREC's Executive Director Jane Weissman commented, "IREC's standards provide the quality framework of technical content, program structure and educational processes for a specialty accreditation that raises the bar for training the clean energy workforce. The ANSI-IREC accreditation supports safeguards in the industry and promotes pathways for improvement."

The ANSI-IREC program follows the evaluation process outlined in the international standard ISO/IEC 17011, which represents the highest globally accepted practices for accreditation bodies. Under this process, trained assessors review documents submitted by applicants, conduct on-site assessments, and make recommendations to the accreditation committee.