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The Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC) has appointed Ben Backwell as the new Chief Executive Officer (CEO).

Backwell has succeeded Steve Sawyer, who joined GWEC as the first Secretary General in 2007 and will continue working with the council as its Senior Policy Advisor.

The new CEO previously worked at FTI Consulting as the Managing Director in the Clean Energy Practice, where he had advised renewable energy companies on strategy, financial and corporate communications and government affairs, GWEC said.

Backwell has also taken part in the work of a number of industry initiatives and organizations, including the board of GWEC.

“The wind industry has seen phenomenal growth over the last 10 years, and is well placed to cement its position as one of the world’s leading energy sources, providing clean, cost-effective power for the digital age,” said Backwell.

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Renewable Energy World

We have all followed with great interest the extraordinary breakthrough in European offshore wind over the past few years. After struggling for a number of years with increasing prices as projects moved further offshore and into deeper waters, the first real breakthrough came in early 2015 with the Horns Rev 3 project where Vattenfall’s winning bid of €103/MWh foreshadowed meeting the industry’s target of €100/MWh by 2020. This was followed in 2016 with a number of bids in both Danish and Dutch

tenders with prices well below that, and in 2017 and 2018 resulted in a number of bids for which all that was required was the wholesale price of power.

While this is not the norm, it shows that the improvements in technology (especially larger and larger turbines) along with a well-developed supply chain, advances in installation and operation and maintenance strategies and experience (along with very low cost of capital) has made offshore wind a competitive source of power going forward in Europe.

One of the knock-on effects of this, of course, is that now what was a slow development of what was viewed as an expensive technology has attracted a great deal of attention outside Europe, in Asia, the Americas and even Australia.

The main market outside of Europe for the past few years has, of course, been China. The Chinese offshore industry has struggled to build up a head of steam over the last 6-8 years, but now seems to be hitting its stride, installing 1,100 MW of offshore wind in 2017 for a cumulative total of nearly 2.9 GW — about 15 percent of the global market; and it seems to be on its way to hitting its latest 2020 target of 5 MW well ahead of time. Provincial governments, especially Jiangsu, Guangdong and Fujian have now gotten involved and have set their own targets, which add up to a pipeline of about 7.5 GW by 2020. For the long term, there are about 60 GW of projects identified.

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North American Windpower

The Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC), a trade association representing the global wind power sector, has appointed Ben Backwell its new CEO.

Backwell replaces Steve Sawyer, who first joined GWEC as secretary general in 2007. Sawyer will continue his work with GWEC as senior policy advisor.

“We are delighted to have Ben join us as GWEC’s new CEO,” says Morten Dyrholm, GWEC’s chairman, as well as Vestas’ group senior vice president of marketing, communications and public affairs. “He will bring solid industry knowledge, commercial acumen, and communication and public affairs expertise to the role.”

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CanalEnergia blog

Executivo trabalhou como jornalista e analista por 20 anos, cobrindo política de energia, mercados e grandes empresas de energia na Europa, EUA, Venezuela, Brasil, Argentina e outros países.

O jornalista especializado em energia elétrica Ben Backwell é o novo executivo chefe do Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC), associação que representa o setor de energia eólica no mundo. Ele substitui Steve Sawyer, que se juntou ao GWEC ainda em 2007, como secretário geral.  Sawyer continuará seu trabalho na associação como assessor de políticas.

“Estamos muito satisfeitos por Ben se juntar a nós como novo CEO da GWEC”, diz Morten Dyrholm, presidente do GWEC e vice-presidente sênior de marketing, comunicações e relações públicas da Vestas Wind Systems. “Ele trará sólidos conhecimentos da indústria, perspicácia comercial e experiência em comunicação e assuntos públicos para o papel.”

Ele acrescenta: “Somos extremamente gratos a Steve Sawyer, que desempenhou um papel importante no sucesso do GWEC e do setor eólico global nos últimos 11 anos. Estamos satisfeitos por continuarmos a contar com o conhecimento de Steve. e rede em sua nova função como Senior Policy Advisor “.