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In this Edition

CEO Report

As Standards Australia continues to implement its transformation program, it’s natural to look towards the future of standards, the value we generate and the people we engage. For standards to better serve and enable communities, whether businesses, consumers, or regulatory agencies, we support and encourage innovative platforms as well as the next generation of standards developers.

August saw the realisation of a number of our initiatives to ensure Standards Australia is delivering on its goals.

We announced the official launch of an innovative software which embeds Australian Standards™ within the FireMate app and platform. This initiative has opened greater access to our standards solutions in new and useful ways. Assistant Minister for Industry Development, Jonathan Duniam, supported the launch, signifying the importance of this activity and marking two years’ worth of work.

When it comes to people, we commenced our NEXTgen 2021/22 program. Focusing on community involvement, this program works to identify upcoming professionals from diverse backgrounds and builds their knowledge and capability to contribute to future standards development. We had a record number of applicants and mentors apply to this program and it is especially encouraging to see such interest from a diverse group of individuals.

Finally, we understand many of our stakeholders and contributors, together with the staff of Standards Australia are going through a period of extended lockdown in response to the COVID health crisis. We acknowledge it is challenging at times to look to the future while in the midst of this lockdown. We very much appreciate the dedication of everyone in adapting to this new environment and continuing to come together and collaborate virtually to deliver trusted solutions that improve life today and tomorrow.

— Adrian O'Connell, Chief Executive

FireMate: Innovative Access to Australian Standards

As part of our Distribution and Licencing Policy Framework, we’re working on developing and providing better access to Australian Standards™. One of the elements of the framework is to encourage innovative organisations to work with us to serve market needs, using Standards Australia’s content in their products.

Early this month, we announced  the integration of Australian fire protection maintenance standards in the FireMate software platform, aiming to support fire protection specialists to work more efficiently.

Assistant Minister for Industry Jonathon Duniam joined us via zoom to share the excitement of the launch.

Power boat standard up to speed

Standards Australia Technical Committee CS-114, Small Craft up to 35m, set to work to align with industry developments.

Announced in our media release, the recently revised and published standard considers the needed changes across safety improvements and testing methodologies and gives industry a single, uniquely Australian document to better achieve regulatory compliance.

Made to Olympic Standards

Behind every Olympic Games lies the hard work and dedication of athletes and their teams. However, what many viewers don’t consider are the years of operational planning, involvement of volunteers, and the creation of infrastructure to support all involved.

Standardisation also plays a vital role, especially for an event that incorporates such varying needs and requirements.

Discover more about the role of standardisation in the Tokyo 2020 Olympics in our recent article.

Standards committee launched into space industry

The Australian Government has launched several initiatives towards supporting a vibrant and globally competitive national space industry. Standards Australia recently announced it is aligning with the Government’s strategy through participating in international committee ISO/TC 20, Aircraft and space vehicles.

NEXTgen 21/22 intake keep to a high standard

With a record number of high standard applicants, 31 individuals from around Australia were selected to take part in the NEXTgen program for 2021/22. The program kicked off on 18 August, with participants meeting virtually due to ongoing COVID restrictions.

A 10-month professional development program, NEXTgen 2021/22 includes early to mid-career professionals from sectors such as education, mining, government, construction, health, ICT, energy and consumer products.

The program, detailed in our article, is structured to develop young professionals into future standards contributors and leaders.

ISO/IEC Consultation Session: Findings

In May, we invited Australian contributors to ISO and IEC to be part of an online consultation session.

The purpose of the session was to learn more about Australia’s presence in ISO and IEC governance groups, as well as to give people an opportunity to provide feedback on participation in international standardisation, including the adaptation to virtual standards development.

Review our key findings and next steps.

In Conversation with Peter Zagorski

Peter Zagorski is the Director of Building Services at the Housing Industry Association (HIA). He sits on a range of Standards Australia Technical Committees and oversees HIA’s involvement in over 50 others relevant to the residential building and construction industry.

Peter previously worked for the Victorian Building Authority and represented the Victorian Government on the Building Codes Committee with the Australian Building Codes Board.  Peter has a broad range of building and construction industry experience with over 40 years involvement in the building regulatory environment. He’s held numerous roles, including positions as municipal building surveyor, building inspector, and building control within State and Local Governments.

Standards Australia (SA): How did you first become involved in standards development?

Peter Zagorski (PZ): As a building inspector and a municipal building surveyor in the early eighties and nineties, I assessed building permits and undertook inspections to ensure building construction was compliant with Australian Standards™.

My first interaction with standards development was as the Victorian representative on the Building Codes Committee reviewing standards for adoption into the Building Code of Australia. The first Standards Committee I participated on was when I joined the BD-038, Wet Areas In Buildings, to review AS 3740, Water proofing for domestic buildings.

I am also on the BD-013, BD-058 and BD-109 committees.  I currently coordinate HIA technical staff on other relevant Technical Committees associated with the National Construction Code (NCC).

SA: How do standards impact and interact with your industry?

PZ: Standards play an important part in the construction industry, particularly in the residential field. Many are referenced as ‘Deemed to Satisfy’ by the NCC which provide the technical construction methods that the building industry needs to comply with to provide safe and healthy buildings.

SA: Why is having access to standards important?

PZ: With over 100 standards directly referenced (and over 1000 additional secondary references) in the NCC that builders, architects, designers, engineers, consultants, and regulators use every day – access to standards through multiple mediums is essential. Being able to access standards at your fingertips now makes it easier to have the relevant and correct information.

However, having access to standards is much more than getting a copy of the standard to those who need them. More importantly, ensuring standards are written in a way that is easily understood for primary users is of critical importance.

SA: What is the future of standardisation in your area of work?

PZ: With the increase in new building materials, components and systems being used and developed, standards are important to establishing a uniform and consistent approach.

One such building system is the Expanded Insulation Finish Systems for Class 1 buildings being developed by the BD-109 committee which I am a part of. This is an exciting new standard that will provide the industry with certainty in design and installation.

I have also found that our meetings, held virtually (not by our choosing), are more targeted, efficient, and productive.

International update

Standards Australia represents Australia on the two major international standards development bodies, the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC). Our activities are reported on our International Updates page.

Click here to view our highlights from August (PDF)

  1. Findings from ISO/IEC Consultation Event and Survey
  2. Quality management systems — Guidelines for the application of ISO 9001 in policing organization
  3. Electrical Equipment in Extreme Environments and Disasters: Proposal for a new IEC Standardisation Evaluation Group (SEG)

Sector update

Access the latest standards development news in your industry sector via our Sectors page.

Drafts open for comment

The public comment process provides an opportunity for stakeholders and members of the public to make valuable contributions. Draft standards currently open for comment are available via Connect.

Fisheries Research and Development Corporation update

Having naming standards for the seafood we eat is crucial to improve consumer confidence, fisheries management, market efficiency and food safety.

Funded by the Fisheries Research and Development Corporation, the Australian Fish Names Standards team is working to improve and expand the database of standardised fish names to include aquatic plants as well.

The importance of their work has recently been summarised by Deakin University Students in a short video you can access on LinkedIn and Facebook.

Responsible Wood update

Chain-of-custody certified companies to benefit from AS 4707:2014 revision

More than 300 chain-of-custody certified companies will benefit from a review of AS 4707:2014, Chain of custody for forest products, which is expected to be published in the last quarter of 2021.

“The standard, in addition to delivering Responsible Wood-certified products to the market, has a tremendous impact on management processes along the timber value chain,” Simon Dorries, CEO of Responsible Wood said.

“The standard provides a credible system to trace and verify the origins of sustainably-grown and certified forest products through all phases of ownership, transportation, and manufacturing to the end consumer,” Mr Dorries said.

The AS 4707 standard reference committee and working group has also worked to align the new standard with the PEFC chain-of-custody standard released in 2020.The committee comprises representatives of the Association of Accredited Certification Bodies, Australian Forest Products Association, Australian Institute of Packaging, Omega Consulting, Timber Development Association, Tasmanian Forest Products Association, the University of Melbourne, the Victorian Forest Products Association, and the Women in Forestry Network.

The committee is chaired by Peter Zed of Omega Consulting who holds an honours degree in forestry from ANU and has worked in the timber industry for more than 40 years.

The revised standard will adopt changes in the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC) International chain-of-custody rules for PEFC ST 2002:2020 and trademark-requirements and PEFC ST 2001:2020 trademark rules.

PEFC is the world’s largest forest certification authority with more than 20,000 companies certified under its chain-of-custody standard.

Responsible Wood is the national governing body for PEFC in Australia with the Australian standard endorsed by and mutually recognised by PEFC International.