BRUSSELS, Belgium 7/3/12 (PennWell) -- The European Renewable Energy Council's board has elected Rainer Hinrichs-Rahlwes as its new president, HydroWorld.com has learned.
Hinrichs-Rahlwes replaces Arthouros Zervos, who served as EREC's founding president since the organization was created in April 2000.
"It is a time for change, and I am proud to hand over the presidency of Europe's leading sector in the energy field, renewable energy, to Rainer Hinrichs-Rahlwes, whom I have known and worked with for many year, and who I believe is more than capable of taking the sector forward over the coming years," says Zervos.
Hinrichs-Rahlwes previously served as Director General for the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Energy (BMU), where he helped promote renewable energy technologies and related topics.
He is also a board member on the German Renewable Energy Federation and president of EREC's member association, the European Renewable Energies Federation (EREF).
"After years of stable growth, renewables are now facing some difficulties in the current political and economic context," Hinrichs-Rahwles says. "But Europe needs renewables and significant further growth of the sector."
HydroWorld.com reported in May 2010 that EREC projected Europe's small hydropower potential to be significant. EREC has also been vocal in its support for the European Union's Renewable Energy Framework Directive, which advocates for 20% of all European energy to be produced by renewable sources by 2020.
"I am honored to have the trust and backing of the renewable energy industry, trade and research associations members of EREC in order to ensure the transformation of the energy system that we need to see happen," Hinrichs-Rahwles says.