At its fall meeting, the ANSI A300 Committee began work on a revision of the Part 1: Pruning standard.
On October 7 and 8, 2020, the ANSI A300 Committee tried something new. Much as with others in the industry and across the world, the operations of the committee could not continue as normal in a world with COVID-19. With buy in from its members, the committee was able to use the Zoom platform to have a productive “virtual” A300 Fall Meeting.
For those who may not know, the A300 Committee writes and updates the various parts of the “American National Standard for Tree Care Operations – Tree, Shrub, and Other Woody Plant Management – Standard Practices,” the industry consensus standards for best practices in tree care. The A300 standards come in 10 “Parts,” covering the best industry practices in areas as diverse as pruning, lightning protection, integrated vegetation management and more. Consensus is crucial to the committee, as all decisions made must be the consensus of the group. Members of the committee come from all parts of the tree care industry, including from government agencies, the private sector, utility groups and community organizations.
At the fall meeting, committee members continued work on three of the current active standards. Notably, a subcommittee began work on the revision of A300 Part 1: Pruning. This standard is generally considered one of the more popular A300 Standards, so anyone interested in this revision can reach out to TCIA for its status or opportunities to get involved. Public comment will not be open on Part 1 until next year at the earliest, but there will be opportunity to comment on other standards in the meantime. Continue checking in at www.tcia.org/A300Standards-CurrentProjects for the most up-to-date information on all things A300.
In addition to starting work on Part 1, significant progress was made in a discussion of A300 Committee processes. As an ANSI-accredited committee, the A300 Committee is held to a high standard of transparency and record keeping. There was agreement that more could be done to ensure the public is educated on the standards while ensuring compliance with processes and procedures in place. Members of the committee are always looking for ways to engage with the public and the industry. A “virtual” world – both during and post-COVID-19 – provides opportunities for increased engagement with the standards through podcasts, webinars and online classes. At the fall meeting, the committee decided to pursue these opportunities as they arise.
This year has been a challenging one for many, and TCIA commends the A300 Committee for stepping up to the challenge of a virtual meeting. The meeting worked so well that committee members agreed to have their next meeting, in February, virtually as well. We hope to be back at in-person events soon, but we know that work can continue effectively in a virtual format in the meantime.
We want to hear from you! What would make the A300 Standards more accessible? How can we make more use of the standards in the industry? Any comments or questions for the A300 Committee can be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Aiden O’Brien is TCIA’s advocacy and standards manager, and the administrator of the A300 Committee. He can be reached at email@example.com.