NESC 2028 Change Proposal Period Announced


Change Proposals are now being accepted from the public for revisions to the 2023 Edition of the National Electrical Safety Code® (NESC®) through 15 May 2024. Proposed changes will be considered in preparation for the publication of the 2028 edition.

What is the NESC?

The NESC has been the go-to safety standard for electric and telecom utility companies of all sizes and ownership of structures since 1914.

Edited and published by the IEEE Standards Association (IEEE SA) and approved by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI), the NESC has contributed to major electrical safety codes in most states of the United States, Caribbean, US Territories, US military bases as well as other entities and countries throughout the world.

Not to be confused with the National Electrical Code® (NEC®), which primarily addresses indoor wiring of homes and businesses, the NESC focuses on the outdoor lines that connect to homes and businesses to deliver power and communications, the electric supply stations and telecommunications plants, and their overhead and below ground structures.

Sections of the Code cover electrical grounding, electrical substation safety, overhead power line safety, underground power line safety, and safety-related work practices.

For more than 100 years, power and energy engineers, public, private, and cooperative utilities, U.S. state and local-level regulatory and policy authorities, academia research professors and students, telecom industry experts, and renewables industry stakeholders have been volunteering their time to review and suggest updates to the National Electric Safety Code.

Why Update the NESC?

Updating the NESC is necessary to better protect workers, the public, and facilities during the installation, operation, and maintenance of power and communications supplies. The Code undergoes a stringent review and update process every five years to ensure that it always remains relevant and trustworthy as new technologies come into use and as safer ways of working are realized.

Job roles dependent upon the NESC include:

  • Utility company business leadership, operations management, engineering and line design, crew supervisors, and safety trainers
  • Providers of power, telecommunications, cable TV, wireless, and Internet
  • Railroads for their power and signaling system
  • Manufacturers of electrical equipment and associated product testing agencies
  • Consultants and contractors that assist in the design and construction of utility lines and infrastructure
  • State and federal regulatory agencies that provide industry oversight

Which Potential Areas May See Changes in the Next Edition of the NESC?

While the purpose of the Change Proposal period is to solicit potential changes to any part of the Code, a few areas are especially likely to see changes proposed this time. These include power generation, renewable energy, and Distributed Energy Resources (DERs).

A new NESC Subcommittee, Subcommittee 9 (SC9), was formed in 2023 with a focus on developing and enhancing procedures to safeguard persons during the installation, operation, or maintenance of an electric generating station and their associated equipment. These responsibilities used to be part of Subcommittee 3, which deals with electrical substations, but have been spun off into a new subcommittee as power generation has become more specialized. SC9 is placing particular emphasis on renewable energy, grid storage batteries, and DERs, so the Subcommittee’s work may produce updates to the Code in these areas.

How Can I Submit A Change Proposal?

To learn more about the NESC Change Proposal process, including how to download a template and submit your proposal, please visit the NESC Change Proposal website. You can also download the NESC 2028 Edition Revision Schedule for a full timeline of the process.

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