4 April 2022
WindEurope elects Sven Utermöhlen of RWE Renewables as its new Chair
WindEurope’s Board of Directors has elected Sven Utermöhlen, CEO Offshore Wind at RWE Renewables, as the Association’s new Chair for an 18-month term. The Board also appointed Kresten Ørnbjerg, VP Head of Global Public Affairs at Vestas, as the new Vice-Chair. The election comes at a critical time for wind energy in Europe.
Europe needs energy security more than ever. Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is a grave reminder that Europe’s energy system is still overly reliant on fossil fuel imports. The EU is clear that increasing Europe’s energy security means an even faster expansion of renewables – from 190 GW today to 480 GW by 2030.
“The coming months will be crucial for wind energy in Europe. The EU’s REPowerEU agenda requires an even faster expansion of renewables to help improve Europe’s energy security. That in turn requires urgent action to accelerate the permitting of new wind farms. And to tackle the problems facing Europe’s wind energy supply chain. In Sven Utermöhlen WindEurope have elected a highly experienced and capable CEO to serve as its Chair for the next 18 months”, says WindEurope CEO Giles Dickson.
Commenting on his appointment, Sven Utermöhlen said: “I am honoured to be elected to represent the full value chain of wind energy in Europe – an industry contributing, through jobs and innovation, to building a low-carbon future. A faster expansion of wind energy is particularly important if we are to achieve the European climate targets and the goal of greater energy sovereignty. Society, our political leaders, and we as industry have to take on greater responsibility to make this work and, above all, seize the opportunities that arise from the energy transition. To accelerate the build-out of wind energy key decisions have to be made now. Faster planning and approval procedures are particularly needed. More than ever, energy policy is security policy. Delivering the Green Deal is a climate and security imperative. The wind industry is determined to deliver, even in these challenging times.”
Sven Utermöhlen has been working in the energy sector since 1993, holding different positions at e.g. Royal Dutch/Shell International, E.ON and RWE Renewables. Since August 2021 he acts as Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Offshore Wind, RWE Renewables GmbH.
Kresten Ørnbjerg added: “I am honoured to be elected as Vice-Chairman of WindEurope. A thriving wind industry is key to strengthening Europe’s economy, and its energy security. I look forward to working closely with our members to ensure the right policy frameworks are implemented, so the wind industry can deliver our investment in Europe’s energy systems, and build the scale needed to meet Europe’s climate goals.”
Kresten Ørnbjerg has more than 13 years of experience in wind energy, all of it at Vestas. He is currently their Vice-President, Head of Global Public Affairs.