Future Direction of CANENA Looking Bright

CANENA is approaching its first quarter century with 80 harmonized, electrotechnical standards in its portfolio. Regional harmonization of electrotechnical safety standards, undertaken in support of the North American Free Trade Agreement has now been accomplished. Manufacturer, product standard developer, certification and testing organization, and end-users alike are realizing long-term economic benefits to harmonized standards, and now wish to advance CANENA as a premier player in the highly competitive standards arena.  Therefore, our challenge ahead is to sustain progress. Last year the CANENA  Board of Directors empowered a task force to formulate a new vision and a new mission for CANENA. Moving toward international harmonization is now a CANENA goal.

Future of Regional Standards Harmonization

The 2017 CANENA Annual General Meeting became host to an unexpected forum to discuss the prospects for standards writing in North America. This was due to the cancellation of the February 2017 Tri-National Summit on North American Standards, which was to be held in Mexico City and hosted by Mexico’s Deputy Ministry of Economy. The summit intended to address challenges, barriers, and opportunities to the existing model for national standards development and regional harmonization by conducting a strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats (SWOT) analysis. Each country was asked to prepare its perspective on regional standards harmonization, and regional manufacturers and standards development organizations were asked to contribute.

One of the inputs was a conceptual proposal to create a new organization and process for cooperative development of regional standards. This concept is referred to as the North American Standards Development Organization (NASDO). This initiative has the potential to coexist with and possibly support CANENA efforts, which have successfully facilitated the development of more than 80 binational or tri-national standards. This concept and others are under consideration as a way to strengthen regional standards development.

2017 Board of Directors Election


Every two years, Members in good standing exercise their right to influence the future direction of CANENA by volunteering to serve in a leadership capacity on the standing committees. These outstanding individuals have been selected by our executive committee for their electrical product expertise; broad experience in regional standardization; governance; and enthusiasm to facilitate and promote regional electrotechnical codes, electrotechnical safety standards, and conformity assessment methods. The new standing committee chairs are:

  • Operations Chair: Michael Wilson, Electrical Program Manager, CSA Group
  • Marketing Communications Chair: Steve Rood, Director Codes & Standards EWS, Legrand/Pass & Seymour
  • Planning Committee Chair: Valara Davis, Senior Standards Specialist, Underwriters Laboratories

During the 2017 CANENA Annual Meeting, Council Members ratified the following slate of officer candidates presented by the executive committee to serve a two-year term that began March 1, 2017:

  • President: Julián Yarza, Director de Normalización, Hubbell de Mexico
  • Mexico Vice President: Juan Rosales, Regulatory Intelligence, Mabe México
  • Mexico Member-at-Large: Jesús Martín Ricárdez Barber, Codes and Standards Manager, Nacional de Conductores Eléctricos
  • Treasurer: Leonard Letea, Project Manager, Electrical, CSA Group
  • Secretariat: NEMA; Secretary General: Joel Solis, Manager of Conformity Assessment, NEMA

Strong volunteer leaders with deep roots in electrotechnical safety will continue to ensure that CANENA benefits from the electrical industry’s greatest innovators and thought leaders well into the future. Our 2017–2018 Board of Directors brings important perspectives and strategic vision that will enable CANENA to meet its regional mission in an increasingly competitive field for electrotechnical standards development for technology that is constantly evolving to fulfill user needs and concerns.

Mark Your Calendars

The 26th CANENA Annual Meeting will be held February 20 through 22, 2018, at the InterContinental Chicago Magnificent Mile hotel located in downtown Chicago, Illinois.

Nominate a Colleague for McNeive Award

CANENA is currently accepting nominations for the 2018 Tim McNeive Leadership Award, which honors a CANENA Member in good standing who has provided great service to CANENA and the electrical industry. Submit nominations by Friday, October 27, 2017, to joel.solis@nema.org.

Click here for more information.

Standards Spotlight

The U.S. electrical industry recently submitted a project request to harmonize regional requirements for uninterruptible power systems and power conversion equipment not used for motor control. The harmonization effort will be based on UL 62477-1:2012+AMD1:2016, Safety requirements for power electronic converter systems and equipment— Part 1: General; and UL 62040-1:Ed 2, Uninterruptible power systems (UPS)—Part 1: General and safety requirements for UPS. In May 2017, a Technical Harmonization Committee (THC) was formed to work on harmonizing the standards.

To learn more contact Khaled Masri, NEMA Program Manager

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