New Future Energy Leaders' Chair sets the energy dance agenda

Posted on 22 July 2015

Pirjo jpegPirjo Jantunen, Environmental Adviser at Helen Ltd. from Finland, the new chair of the World Energy Council Future Energy Leaders, FELs, a community of young professionals who share a commitment to shaping the global energy future, talks about the challenges that the FELs want to address.

The Council’s Future Energy Leaders’ programme, FEL-100, is designed to help shape, inspire and grow energy leaders of tomorrow. It serves as a platform for engaging a limited number of ambitious young professionals in national, regional and international activities and events with the objective to inspire participants to become the next generation of energy leaders capable of solving the world’s most pressing challenges regarding energy and sustainability.

Pirjo said: “There are plenty of challenges that the energy industry is facing and will face in the future. To name just a few of the challenges, there are 1.2 billion people without access to electricity, shortage of natural resources, sustainability goals and skilled workforce issues.

“Trying to solve all the many problems using the same thinking that created them in the first place will probably fail. To achieve sustainable goals what is needed is fresh thinking, innovation and new approaches. Young and enthusiastic energy professionals can make a real difference.”

Describing the FEL-100 programme, Pirjo said: “FELs is for exceptional, young professionals who have a passion to shape the global energy future. It is designed to build on the ideas and innovative potential of the next generation, helping to develop new ways of thinking and frame the future of sustainable energy.

“The Future Energy Leaders network represents everything that is needed to change the energy industry: its members come from all the regions of the world; represent diverse sectors; and have excellent knowledge to share from variety of issues. And, what is most important, Future Energy Leaders have the passion to shape the energy solutions for tomorrow and thus change the world.”

Pirjo said: “I am privileged to be elected as the Chair of Future Energy Leaders. We have an excellent Board, and we will develop the programme further during the next three years. The FEL-Summit 2015 is already under preparation, and there is much more to come.

“Every year the FEL Board will select approximately 35 new FELs into the programme. Young energy professionals should apply during the first quarter of each year. If you feel that you have what it takes to become an energy leader, then please join us! I want to warmly welcome the newcomers and I hope that their FEL experience will be as rewarding as mine has been; full of learning, knowledge sharing and new friends.”

In conclusion, Pirjo spoke to the present energy leaders: “In order to meet the challenges industry faces I encourage you to involve future energy leaders and young professionals in the energy transition. We, the Future Energy Leaders, might not yet have the experience of the present generation of energy leaders, but our greatest value is that we have a fresh view and ability to ask the questions people have never even thought of.”

Inspired by Alan Watts, Pirjo said: “The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance!!!! Do you have the courage to join the dance with the future energy leaders?”

Pirjo’s vision for FEL-100 Programme is:
• To translate the vision into reality by taking planned and appropriate steps in a time bound manner.
• To collaborate with maximum possible no of organisations to strengthen and grow the network
• To ensure FEL-100 programme attracts the highest quality professionals and maintain the gender balance
• To ensure increased participation and contribution in study groups or knowledge networks along with 100% commitment from each FEL in various activities
• To have better coordination among various sub committees of FEL Board to ensure the optimum utilisation of the resources and successful implementation of FEL programme
• To see FEL community growing and developing as one of the strongest pillars of World Energy Council.

Marie-José Nadeau, World Energy Council Chair, said: “Pirjo brings leadership and enthusiasm that will inspire young professionals to follow in her footsteps. The challenges in the energy sector, such as climate change mitigation are global. Having safe, sustainable and reliable energy is central to a healthy, caring and peaceful society. I look forward to working with Pirjo and our Future Energy Leaders as the Council works to address these challenges.”