Dr Christian Rakos, Managing Director of the Austrian Pellets Association (proPellets Austria) has been elected as President of the World Bioenergy Association (WBA). Dr Rakos succeeds Remigijus Lapinskas from Lithuania, who steps down as President after serving for four years.
The Steering Committee of the World Bioenergy Association (WBA) appointed Dr Christian Rakos as President of the association at the WBA Annual Meetings 2020. Initially scheduled to be held in Vienna, Austria, a conference call was held instead to convene WBA members for the meetings on account of the current coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
On behalf of the Secretariat, we are pleased to have Christian Rakos take up the role of President. The most important qualities required in the current times of global crisis is leadership and collaboration. We are grateful for the decision of the Steering Committee and look forward to working closely with Rakos and also the new board, remarked Bharadwaj Kummamuru, Executive Director of WBA.
Well respected and established
A physicist by academic training, Dr Rakos has spent his entire professional life dealing with the use of renewable energy. First at the Institute for Technology Assessment of the Austrian Academy of Sciences, then at the Austrian Energy Agency and finally in his current position as Managing Director of the Austrian Pellet Association (proPellets Austria).
The sustainable use of bioenergy plays an important role in our fight against climate change. Using bioenergy based on modern technology and sustainable management has enormous potential. It is a great pleasure and honour for me to be able to contribute in this context. Promoting the transition to a sustainable bioenergy use is my most important goal as the new President of the World Bioenergy Association, remarked Dr Rakos.
Dr Rakos is seemingly well equipped for this “transition to sustainable bioenergy goal” as he was also the founding President of the European Pellet Council (EPC), part of Bioenergy Europe (previously known as AEBIOM). He is also a board member of the Forum of Austrian Scientists for Environmental Protection and the Austrian Society for Environment and Technology. Furthermore, Dr Rakos is active on the board of the Austrian Biomass Association (ABA) and the Umbrella Association for Renewable Energy Austria.
Bioenergy plays an outstanding role among renewable energy sources and it is imperative to utilize all renewable energy sources to overcome the challenge of decarbonizing the energy sector. Bioenergy already provides clean and sustainable options for heating, electricity and transportation. Personally, for the past four years, I am glad to have been the President and help guide the mission of promoting sustainable development worldwide. I also wish my successor Christian Rakos all the best in his new role, said outgoing President, Remigijus Lapinskas who will continue as a WBA board member.
New board elected
At the Steering Committee meeting, a new board was also elected. The list of the current WBA board includes Alarik Sandrup, Lantmännen, Sweden; Ben Moxham, Camberwell Energy, UK; Dr Christian Rakos, Propellets, Austria (President); Dr Hazir Farouk, Sudan University of Science and Technology, Sudan; Hong Hao, Great Resources, China (Vice President); Zygmunt Gzyra, Polish Chamber of Biofuels, Poland; Dawn Lambe, Biomass North Development Centre, Canada; Jean-Marc Jossart, Bioenergy Europe, Belgium; Mika Ohbayashi, Renewable Energy Institute, Japan; Remigijus Lapinskas, LITBIOMA, Lithuania; Saku Rantanen, Tasma Bioenergy, Singapore; Dr Tanay Sidki Uyar, Marmara University, Turkey (Vice President); Dr Werner Sitzmann, Amandus Kahl, Germany; Dr Georgiy Geletukha, UABIO, Ukraine; Dr Glaucia Souza, University of Sao Paolo, Brazil; Larissa Rose, Below50, Australia; Oscar Mijares Espinosa, Pellet MX, Mexico; Pharoah Le Feuvre, International Energy Agency (IEA), France; Vadim Zubayev, Hungarian Ethanol Association, Hungary.
A new Nominating Committee in charge of proposing candidates for the WBA board for the future was voted for. Its members include Gustav Melin, Svebio, Sweden (Convener); Christoph Pfemeter, Austrian Biomass Association, Austria; Andrew Lang, WBA, Australia.