IEA approves third term for chief pushing clean energy

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Dr. Fatih Birol.
Dr. Fatih Birol.
Dr. Fatih Birol.

The International Energy Agency approved a third term for executive director Fatih Birol as the organisation seeks a faster transition to clean energy, it said Friday.

The Turkish economist, who has been in the role since September 2015, will serve for another four years from September 2023.

His mandate, approved unanimously by the Paris-based agency's governing board, comes at a "pivotal moment" for the IEA, it said in a statement.

Birol now had the "strong backing to lead a new era for the IEA", it added.

The agency has since its inception focused on the energy security of developed countries but its mission was officially extended this week to search for carbon neutrality to address climate change.

Among its new missions, the IEA will also focus on the question of metal and mineral resources, key to producing carbon-free energy hardware.

The IEA was founded in 1974 following the oil crisis with a mandate focusing on energy security and policy cooperation.

Under the leadership of Birol, the IEA has focused on the transition to zero-carbon energy as part of the sector's fight against climate change.

In May 2021, the IEA produced a roadmap which included a call for no investment in new fossil fuel supply projects.

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