CEATI International’s roots date back to the late 19th Century, with the founding of the Canadian Electricity Association in 1891. The Association became an instrumental player within the new nation’s burgeoning utility industry. Throughout the first half of the 20th Century, Canada quickly expanded territorially. This was followed by rapid population growth after the Second World War. These factors brought forth additional challenges for the Canadian utilities and the Association.
During the 1970s, in order to better serve and meet the needs of the Canadian marketplace and the provincially-owned electric utilities, the Association established a Research & Development program, which was at that time limited exclusively to Canadian utilities. The need for such a collaborative R&D program in a progressively urbanizing nation became evident following the July, 1977 blackout in New York City, which led to looting, vandalism and crowds of stranded public transit commuters.
By the mid-1990s, the Association refocused its objectives towards governmental relations and advocacy, while reducing its involvement with technical programs. Jacob A. Roiz was appointed the Managing Director of the R&D program and asked to propose a new and innovative approach in order to address the technical needs of Canadian utilities. Mr. Roiz, sensing the shifting landscape within the electric industry and recognizing the forthcoming globalization trend, began to look beyond Canada’s borders to further build and develop the newly reconstituted program, which was already supported by all of the major utilities in Canada. Within this new environment of deregulation and open markets, the program quickly expanded. By the end of the decade, the program had nearly quadrupled in size and represented over fifty (50) utilities from Canada, the United States, Europe, Asia and Australia.
On January 1, 2001, the program was renamed CEA Technologies and began to operate independently of the Association. Jacob Roiz was appointed as President & CEO and Richard Drouin, the former Chairman of Hydro-Quebec and a Member of the Order of Canada, was appointed Chairman. These decisions allowed CEA Technologies to further support the development of new Interest Groups and Task Forces, in accordance with the needs of the industry, while continuing to flourish on the national and international stage.
On January 1, 2008, in light of the global character and outreach of the program, the organization officially became known as CEATI International, the Centre for Energy Advancement through Technological Innovation. As of today, over one hundred and twenty (120) utilities from all six (6) of the world’s continents are represented in CEATI’s seventeen (17) Interest Groups and Task Forces. CEATI now boasts a library of over two thousand (2,000) published reports and is currently managing over one hundred and fifty (150) on-going projects in all areas related to the power grid. A significant amount of these reports have been adopted as national and international standards and numerous guides have been recognized as points of reference for practical information.
The future looks bright!