A Conversation with Liu Wei, Secretary General of the China Energy Storage Alliance
We recently spoke with Liu Wei, Secretary General of our MOU partner organization, the China Energy Storage Alliance (CNESA), on how our organizations are collaborating on standards solutions to help improve safety, security, and sustainability internationally in the energy storage industry. Read the full interview below:
Q: Could you briefly introduce the China Energy Storage Alliance (CNESA) and the organization’s mission and vision?
Liu Wei: The China Energy Storage Alliance (CNESA) is a grade 5A China Social Organization and China’s first nonprofit organization dedicated to the international energy storage industry. CNESA is committed to the healthy development of the energy storage industry through positive influence of government policy and promotion of energy storage applications.
CNESA’s membership body includes 480 exceptional domestic and international organizations involved in all aspects of the energy storage industry, from technology manufacturers, renewable energy corporations, relevant research institutes, and more. CNESA partners with government bodies to develop strategies for industry development, determine directions for medium-and long-term industry growth, consolidate efforts to establish a market mechanism, and many other projects that play a crucial role in advancing the energy storage industry in China and abroad.
CNESA’s market research department provides a variety of services including our Global Energy Storage Database, Energy Storage Industry Tracking, special research reports, consultation services, and our annual Energy Storage Industry White Paper. You can learn more about CNESA and see some of our original research at our official website.
Q: Why did CNESA decide to become an MOU partner with UL Standards & Engagement?
Liu Wei: Safety is critical to the development of energy storage. Especially in recent years, energy storage accidents have attracted social attention. Since 2018, CNESA has become an association standard pilot unit authorized by the Standardization Administration of China, and safety is the focus of the CNESA's standardization work.
UL Standards & Engagement is an internationally renowned safety standard-setting organization. Energy storage-related standards such as UL 9540, UL 9540A, and UL 1973 have been widely recognized by the energy storage industry.
CNESA and UL Standards & Engagement have established energy storage standard cooperation to promote energy storage safety research and international exchanges, formulate relevant standards more scientifically, and lay a safe foundation for the development of the energy storage industry.
Q: Which UL Standards & Engagement resources do you find beneficial?
Liu Wei: UL Standards & Engagement has a history of more than 100 years, has formulated a large number of safety standards, and has very valuable experience in safety standard formulation. UL Standards & Engagement has relevant instructions and training for UL standards stakeholders, allowing participants to quickly understand the procedures and ways of participating in the UL standards development process.
UL Standards & Engagement’s online Collaborative Standards Development System (CSDS) platform enables participants to understand the UL standards development process, put forward relevant opinions and suggestions on the standard, and participate in the voting of the standard.
UL Standards & Engagement also has relevant webinars for specific standards instructions and discussions. These all help interested experts to participate and understand the standard. In the future, CNESA also hopes to jointly organize energy storage-related webinars and other activities with UL Standards & Engagement to strengthen the understanding between China and the United States.
Q: What is the positive impact of your organization’s association with UL Standards & Engagement when it comes to adoption and adaption of safety standards?
Liu Wei: At present, the standards cooperation between CNESA and UL Standards & Engagement in energy storage safety is in the exploratory stage. CNESA and UL Standards & Engagement set up the UL Energy Storage Standard China Workgroup and recommended relevant Chinese experts to participate in UL Standards & Engagement technical committees. On the other hand, with the support of experts such as the State Key Laboratory of Fire Science of the University of Science and Technology of China, CNESA is transforming the UL 9540A test method standard into the CNESA standard.
On the afternoon of Oct. 31, 2021, CNESA, the State Key Laboratory of Fire Science of University of Science and Technology of China, and UL Standards & Engagement jointly held a webinar on energy storage accident analysis and safety countermeasures. At the meeting, Chinese and foreign experts introduced the typical energy storage accidents and experience in China and the United States. The webinar was highly successful and got a great response.
It is believed that in the future, with the support of both parties and relevant experts, the energy storage industry will be able to develop more safely.
Q: Can you highlight any achievements that have emerged from this association? How do you see this association evolving in the coming years?
Liu Wei: The China Energy Storage Alliance is committed to the healthy development of the energy storage industry through positive influence of government policy and promotion of energy storage applications. With the rapid development of China's energy storage industry, CNESA has also made greater achievements. It plays a great influence in the development of policy promotion and standard formulation of China's energy storage industry. In the process of energy storage industry development, CNESA is actively carrying out the construction of energy storage association standards, improving the energy storage standard system, and safety standard system. CNESA has issued a number of standards and is actively preparing a number of new standards under preparation. At different development stages of the energy storage industry, it plays an essential role in promoting the solution of key problems encountered in industry development, such as industrial safety problems.
In the future, CNESA will play a more significant role in the development of the industry. It will promote policy development, build industrial mechanisms, formulate association standards according to development needs, integrate industry resources, and play an influential role as the hub of the industry platform.
Q: How important is diversity and inclusion in standards development? What is your take on the role of women in standards development?
Liu Wei: In the development of the energy storage industry and the formulation of industry standards, diversity and inclusiveness have been driving its development. Diversification is particularly conducive to the progress of standardization. Standardization means integrating different requirements and challenges into one standard document. Therefore, the more diversified the input, the more we can promote high-quality innovation and development. The diversification of standards makes it suitable for more upstream and downstream enterprises in the industry, while inclusiveness enables enterprises to promote their development through participation.
In the male-dominated energy storage industry, the members of the China Energy Storage Alliance group have increased diversity efforts. For example, various project participants are women. Women have a distinct perspective, which can bring different perspectives and promote innovative development in standard setting. Inclusive and gender-diversified approaches play an influential role in standardization.
Q: UL Standards & Engagement recently launched a new brand and identity, expanding its scope to include both standards and engagement. Have you seen or heard about this, and do you have any initial reactions?
Liu Wei: We saw news that the UL enterprise is now divided into UL Research Institutes, UL Standards & Engagement, and UL Solutions. By separating R&D and standards, UL Standards & Engagement can maintain the neutrality of standards in the future, attract more institutions and experts to participate, and jointly create globally recognized safety standards.