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Energy UK and SPEN figures recognised in New Year’s Honours List

Image: Getty.

Image: Getty.

Representatives from a variety of energy organisations including Energy UK and SP Energy Networks (SPEN) have received awards as part of the 2020 New Year’s Honours list.

Future Networks Manager at SPEN, James Yu, was awarded an MBE for his services to the electricity supply industry and innovation. Yu joined SPEN in 2013 as the transmission innovation lead before changing role to future networks manager in 2015. Yu had previously worked for SSE, with ten years of experience in electricity transmission planning.

Elsewhere, Laura Sandys, chair of the Energy Systems Data Taskforce, was awarded a CBE for services to UK Energy Policy. In a post on social media site LinkedIn, Sandys said it is an “extraordinary honour”, and thanked Richard Dobson and Jeff Hardy of the Grantham Institute at Imperial College for their work on the Transforming Energy Regulation Programme. Sandys also thanked Ofgem and the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy for being “great partners over the years”.

“This huge privilege is actually a recognition that unlocking data and energy digitalisation will make an important contribution to the energy transformation that we need to make to achieve net zero.”

Virginia Graham, chief executive officer of Renewable Energy Assurance, which administers the Renewable Energy Consumer Code (RECC), was awarded an OBE for her services to promoting renewable energy.

The RECC sets out consumer protection standards for businesses who are selling or leasing renewable energy generation systems to domestic consumers. As of 1 January 2020, RECC membership is included in Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS) certificates for solar PV, battery storage and wind installations.

Also receiving an OBE was Barbara Vest, a special advisor for Energy UK, for services to the energy industry. Vest has been employed in the energy sector since 1991 and joined Energy UK as the director of generation in 2012, before taking the role of special adviser in 2018.

Last year saw National Grid’s Cordi O’Hara and Northern Powergrid’s Rod Gardner awarded OBEs.

SSE’s former director of distribution performance Chandra Trikha also received an award last year, receiving an MBE following his retirement.


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