In order to be effective, energy and climate policy making must be guided by robust scientific knowledge. Access to accurate, internationally accepted measurements and standards is therefore fundamental for policy decision making, as well as to assess the impacts of policies and mitigation efforts.
The Organization of American States and the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) are partnering to implement the ECPA Renewable Energy and Climate Science for the Americas initiative, with the aim of fostering effective and reliable measurements and standards to sustain the region’s deployment of renewable energy technologies, thereby bolstering low-carbon economies. The initiative was announced on October 8-9, 2013, in a planning workshop held during the General Assembly of the Inter-American Metrology System at the Centro Nacional de Metrología in Queretaro in Mexico.
At the planning workshop, the newly formed partnership presented the initiative to an audience comprised of experts, scientists and researchers devoted to the study of energy and climate. Discussions focused on ways to improve data quality through better measurement techniques applied to greenhouse gas emissions, renewable and non-renewable energy, climate, air quality, energy efficiency and distribution, infrastructure and smart grids, and sustainability.
The planning workshop provided a forum where representatives hailing from the national metrology institutions of 34 countries in the Americas were able to initiate a discussion on current needs of the Inter-American System of Metrology (SIM). The exercise allowed for the identification of technology and metrology areas where training and best practice sharing would be most beneficial. The input provided by the participants will yield a series of workshops to improve local and regional capacity for measurement and standardization in the fields of renewable energy and climate science. Additionally, OAS and NIST will explore ways to foster partnerships and collaborative approaches to expand renewable energy use, air quality measurement, and efficient energy use and distribution systems. Ultimately, the ECPA initiative will advance a regional plan of action on effective and reliable measurements and standards.