IEA reappoints Fatih Birol for new term as Executive Director

The Governing Board of the International Energy Agency has voted unanimously to reappoint Dr Fatih Birol as Executive Director, giving him strong backing to lead a new era for the IEA.

His reappointment, for a third term, comes at a pivotal moment for the IEA amid heightened awareness that clean energy transitions must be not only rapid but also secure.

The vote to reappoint Dr Birol took place during the 2022 IEA Ministerial. The two-day meeting was chaired by US Energy Secretary Jennifer M. Granholm, and brought together energy and climate ministers from more than 40 countries.

New mandates detailed in the 2022 IEA Ministerial communiqué set the IEA up to evolve in its mission and impact, including by ensuring energy security during the energy transition, leading the global energy sector’s fight against climate change, and strengthening the IEA family of governments.

“Our decision today for an additional term for Dr Birol as IEA Executive Director again confirms our confidence in his skills and expertise,” said Secretary Granholm, the Chair of the 2022 IEA Ministerial Meeting. “We look forward to working with the IEA under his continued leadership as we ramp up efforts to accelerate the clean energy transition on the road to a net zero future while strengthening our energy security.”

“I am very pleased that we have reappointed Dr Birol as Executive Director for a third term,” said Ambassador Hiroshi Oe, Chair of the IEA Governing Board. “This sets the organisation up perfectly to deliver on the commitments laid out in the 2022 IEA Ministerial communiqué, and play a key role in accelerating sustainable and secure clean energy transitions.”

“I’m honoured that IEA members have put their trust in me to lead the Agency into a new era following what I believe may turn out to be the most consequential Ministerial Meeting in the IEA’s near 50-year history,” said Dr Birol. “The energy world is changing fast and needs to change faster still. With our new mandates we are now ready to respond and chart a new course for the IEA, not just for the next two years but for decades to come. My energy, enthusiasm and commitment to lead my outstanding colleagues within the IEA Secretariat and to serve our Member Governments have never been stronger.”

Dr Birol has served as Executive Director since September 2015. Under his leadership, the IEA has been instrumental in underpinning a significant increase in global climate ambition and in responding to new vulnerabilities and risks to energy security. As well as leading the IEA, Dr Birol chairs the World Economic Forum’s (Davos) Energy Advisory Board. Last year, TIME named him on its annual list of the 100 most influential people in the world. He is also the recipient of numerous state decorations, including earlier this year the French Legion of Honour.

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