On Thursday, February 04, the kick-off event of the 3rd cycle of the Young Energy Professionals (YEP) program took place digitally from 09:00 – 13:00. More than 50 participants could be won for the future program of the World Energy Council Austria. The YEP come from all areas of the energy industry, policy and research and get the unique opportunity to network with colleagues from other industries. Over the next two years, the YEP will write reports on their vision of a positive and sustainable energy future.
In his welcoming speech, Secretary General Dr. Robert Kobau emphasized the need to support young people in the energy sector to achieve the Paris climate goals and the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals. President Dr. Michael Strugl emphasized that interdisciplinary exchange is essential in the current transformation. World Energy Council Austria provides the ideal platform by promoting dialogue and exchange between sectors. In her video message, Federal Minister Leonore Gewessler made it clear that the climate crisis can be fought through courageous action, innovation and cohesion. The transformation must start now. This major challenge can only be solved through a holistic approach, with the YEP program providing a platform that actively contributes to the achievement of climate goals. Ivo Wakounig, Secretary General Assistant and YEP Coordinator, then presented the leitmotif of the 3rd cycle. The motto, “Now or never: Starting Signal for the Great Transformation” is intended to serve as a call to action to initiate positive transformations in the energy sector. He encouraged the YEP to use the program to network, exchange ideas and work together to drive the transformation forward.
Mag. Jürgen Suschek-Berger and Prof. Günter Getzinger led the following future workshop. Prof. Getzinger drew future perspectives for the next 5 to 10 years in the Austrian energy sector. There will be winners and losers in all areas of the energy industry as a result of the transformation. In addition, opportunities of the transformation were outlined, for which working groups of the YEP will be formed. Mag. Suschek-Berger then explained the procedure of the future workshop. The YEP had 90 minutes in groups to reflect on current issues and problems in the energy sector and to find answers in a criticism, imagination and realization phase. In the subsequent plenary session, the results of the reflection process were presented and elaborated as additional work topics. According to the preferences the final working groups will be formed.
At the end, Secretary General Dr. Robert Kobau thanked all participants for their active participation. The YEP are an integral part of the World Energy Council Austria as future shapers in the energy sector.