A1: Opening Session

As the sector matures, rapid technological advances are enabling new ways of managing and maintaining assets. In a changing marketplace, falling battery costs are allowing onshore wind to provide new services and access more revenue streams. In this session, leading figures from industry present their overview on the increasing role of storage and how greater digitisation is helping them maximise the performance of their assets.

Hugh McNeal, Chief Executive, RenewableUKHughMcNeal New small version

Hugh McNeal took up his post as Chief Executive of RenewableUK in April. Before this, he spent a substantial part of his career as a senior civil servant, most recently as Director of Change at the Department of Energy and Climate Change. His other roles have included Chief Executive of the Office for Renewable Energy Deployment at DECC, and Deputy Director of Low Carbon Business at the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills. He was educated at the London School of Economics and Harvard University where he also taught from 1995 to 2000. Hugh was on the Board and then Chair of Equinox, a charity providing services to people seeking to overcome alcohol, drug and mental health problems, from 2002 until 2012. He lives in south London with his wife and young son.

Neil Douglas, Director, BVG Associates LtdNeil Douglas 2

Neil joined the management team of BVG Associates as a Director in the spring of 2017 and heads up our business in Scotland, ensuring that our team continues to develop our relationships with the Scottish renewable energy community, including enablers, government, financiers, developers and manufacturers. He has over 20 years of experience in the renewable energy industry, with specific expertise in the design, development and operational management of projects, including performance engineering, technical due diligence and risk analysis for onshore and offshore wind farms. He also has extensive knowledge of wind lidar, wind resource analysis and mitigating complex wind flow issues. Neil joined BVG Associates after two decades with Natural Power and holds a Masters in Energy Systems and the Environment from the University of Strathclyde.

Richard Walls, Chief Operations Director, Natural PowerRichard Walls

Richard joined Natural Power in 2009 and is the current Chief Operations Director for the global business, focused on developing and driving business growth for 350 staff within renewables and infrastructure projects both offshore and onshore to the energy industry. Richard has over 18 years in commercial consultancy and advisory experience and this has been focused within the renewable energy sector since 2003.




Chris Gaydon, Investment Director, Octopus InvestmentsChris Gaydon

Chris joined Octopus Investments in 2015 as an Investment Director and sits on the management committee responsible for the strategy and management of over 1200MW of solar, onshore wind, biogas,  biomass and reserve power assets in the UK and Europe. He has worked for over 13 years in European renewables with particular experience acquiring, developing, constructing, financing and operating onshore wind farms in the UK and Europe. Prior to Octopus Investments he worked at Falck Renewables in the role of Business Development Director. Chris was educated at the University of Sydney and holds a BEng (Hons) in Chemical Engineering and a BCom in Finance and Economics.


A2: Operations and Management: Reducing Costs Through Digitisation

Our ability to manage and monitor data is increasing exponentially. This enables onshore asset managers to gain better insights in to the performance of their turbines, and maximise the revenue flows. In this session we will explore how asset managers are looking to new opportunities data management offers and can support the delivery of services to the Grid.

Chair: Robbie Gibson, Director of Asset Management, Wood plcRobbie Gibson

With over 13 years of experience in the renewable energy industry Robbie is Director of Asset Management at Wood - Clean Energy. Robbie comes from a background in aviation maintenance and has a degree in mechanical engineering with electrical systems. Robbie leads multiple teams within Woods Asset Management and Operations service line, providing pre and post development project support, particularly relevant is the O&M Team who provide asset management and operations and maintenance services to operational wind farms and solar plants currently totalling 316MW. Robbie’s provides support and direction with a specific focus on wind turbine power performance testing of operational assets.

Elizaveta Bazarova, Senior Associate, Norton Rose Fulbright LLPElizaveta Bazarova

Elizaveta is a senior associate in the Energy Group of Norton Rose Fulbright LLP.  She has advised on a broad range of trading, corporate, project finance and structured finance matters in the energy sector over the years, including advice on power and gas supply arrangements, development and financing of power generation assets and acquisition and disposal of various power and gas assets. She was seconded to one of the largest European utilities in their energy management and trading unit. She also worked in Moscow, Paris and Prague.

Colin Minns, Head of Service Northern Europe, Nordex GroupColin Minns

Colin has over 30 years in various power generation industries with the last 9 years spent in wind with two different OEM’s. He joined Nordex as the Country Manager for Sweden before moving to the Head of Service North Europe role which he currently holds and is responsible for the operations in 10 countries managing around 3.5GW of operational assets. He holds a BEng (Hons) in Electrical Power Engineering as well as an MBA and is a Chartered Engineer. His last 11 years have been spent in senior management roles mostly within a maintenance and operations environment.

Dr Iain Dinwoodie, Senior Asset Performance Engineer, Natural PowerIain Dinwoodie

Iain joined Natural Power in 2016, bringing over 7 years of experience in the wind industry. During this time, Iain’s work has covered a wide range of operational and performance aspects of wind energy. This has included projects covering operational modelling and decision making under uncertainty, evaluation of reliability centered maintenance applied to wind, reliability performance analysis, LCOE assessment and comparison of CFD and LIDAR measurements. His role within Natural Power is focused on improving the performance and value of the O&M analysis from a variety of operational data sources including SCADA, CMS and expert knowledge within the asset management and ControlCentre teams at Natural Power. Iain has a MEng in Mechanical Engineering with Aeronautics and a PhD on the reliability, operations and maintenance of offshore wind turbines, both from the University of Strathclyde.

Andy Lewin, General Manager, Wind Energy Benchmarking Services (WEBS)Andy Lewin

Andy joined the ORE Catapult in May 2014, as Head of Projects Andy leads on a variety of ORE Catapult technology innovation and strategic projects. Having worked in the Renewables industry since 2005 Andy has extensive experience of Onshore and Offshore renewables including wind and tidal energy. Prior to joining the ORE Catapult Andy worked for 8 years in a variety of project management roles during the development and construction phases of various offshore windfarms.

Ervin Semsedin, Technical Director, Monsson OperationErvin Semsedin

Ervin Semsedin has been active in the wind energy industry for more than 8 years. During 1996 to 2006, he worked as an electrical engineer. In 2009, Ervin started working in the wind industry as a wind turbine field technician, undertaking troubleshooting and maintenance.  Since 2010, Ervin has been Technical Director of Monsson Operation, successfully coordinating a team of more than 100 wind technicians. Having a very specialized team, Monsson Operation is one of the largest suppliers of full life cycle services for wind farms providing specialized O&M services for wind farms in operation, with the goal of maximizing performance and reducing wind farm cost of production.




A3: Operations and Management: To Repower or Recertify?

As an asset comes to the end of its certified life owners will have to decide whether it is best to recertify, replace and repower, or decommission. Here we will explore what issues need to be considered and what are the practical steps that need to be taken?

Chair: Richard Furniss, Managing Director UK & Ireland, Nordex GroupRichard Furniss

Richard is an engineer by profession with over 30 years of experience in industry and management in UK and overseas - including 4 years running a large service business operating in wind, steel, mining, offshore and naval markets.  Wanting to be part of the transition to renewable energy, he joined the wind industry and Nordex in 2009, firstly leading their wind farm construction activities, and in his current role for the last 4 years.   Rich has recently taken over as chair of RenewableUK’s Onshore Wind Policy Forum.

Michael Wilkinson, Service Line Leader, Asset Operations and Management, DNV GLMichael Wilkinson 2

Michael is responsible for Asset Operation & Management services at DNV GL. After working as an Engineering Doctorate Research Engineer with FKI Energy Technology (De Wind), he joined Garrad Hassan as an operational wind farm analyst in 2007. He spent several years assessing operational wind farms; working for owners, operators and investors worldwide on a range of data analysis, wind farm monitoring and long term energy forecasting services. As Service Line Leader he is responsible for technical leadership of operational renewable activities for DNV GL's global Energy's business; he is responsible for the development of services in asset management, inspections, short-term forecasting and operational data analysis. He is particularly interested in wind turbine data analytics, condition monitoring and reliability analysis. Michael is a Chartered Engineer in the Institute of Engineering and Technology.

Julian Martin, Commercial Manager, ENERCON Services UKJulian Martin 003

After a successful career in Logistics and then Management Consultancy with KPMG, Julian entered the wind industry in 2006. He is currently Commercial Manager within ENERCON’s UK Operation & Maintenance organisation, who maintain over 1GW installed capacity of Onshore Wind across the UK. He is a member of PEL/088 UK Wind Turbine Shadow Group, IEC 61400-1 Standard Maintenance Team MT01;,and sits on PEL/088’s Wind Turbine Life Extension Workgroup. He was a past Chair of the RenewableUK Medium Wind, and latterly Small & Medium Wind Strategy Group’s.

Rhys Thomas, Information Manager, RenewableUKRhys Thomas

Rhys Thomas joined RenewableUK in March 2009 as Supply Chain Policy Officer. He holds an M.Eng from Oxford University in Engineering, Economics & Management. During his time at RenewableUK as Director of Renewables Delivery his work included coordinating policy to support the development of a strong UK based supply chain for wind and marine renewables and ensuring that the industries skills challenges are addressed. In his recent role as Information Manager, Rhys has developed the new Project Intelligence Hub which brings together RenewableUK’s data resources including the established Wind Energy Database, the Supply Chain Map, & our Global Offshore Wind dataset used to support the GROW Offshore Wind programme.

Tim Rubert, PhD Researcher, University of StrathclydeTim Rubert

Tim Rubert is a PhD researcher at the Centre for Doctoral Training in Wind and Marine Energy Systems at the University of Strathclyde, Glasgow. His current research is in fibre optic sensing, the economics of wind energy, and lifetime extension. He completed his BEng in the International Joint Degree Programme of Business Administration and Engineering at the University of Applied Science Bremen, Germany and his MSc in Engineering Business Management at the University of Warwick, England. Prior to joining academia, Tim was with Enercon GmbH where he was responsible for the commercial project management of construction sites in Austria and was subsequently appointed an Enercon student employee alongside his MSc.





 A4: Storage: Overcoming Regulatory Barriers

While it may make economic sense to co-locate batteries with onshore assets, the practicalities of doing so can be a challenge. In this session, we will discuss how these can be overcome with industry experts and the regulator to explore the issues you need to consider.

Chair: Joe Dunn, Grid & Regulation Manager, ScottishPower RenewablesJoe Dunn

Joe has over 25 years’ experience with responsibilities in the electricity utility industry He is an expert in transmission regulatory and commercial arrangements, charging and associated policy and has extensive experience in areas including electrical operations, design/ construction and customer service. He has a strong working knowledge of the electrical industry framework and associated codes and acts in an advisory capacity to industry in relation to Scottish process and policy. He is currently the Grid and Regulation Manager for ScottishPower Renewables and is responsible for ensuring that Grid and Regulatory arrangements and developments that impact SPR are identified and managed effectively.



Dr Marek Kubik, Advancion Market Director, AES Energy StorageMarek Kubik

Marek leads AES’s UK&I client solutions team and is responsible for overseeing the development and coordination of Advancion Energy Storage sales and project proposals across Europe, the Middle East and Africa.  He has approaching a decade of experience in energy and sustainability, including an instrumental role in the development of the UK’s first fully commercial battery storage array at Kilroot Power Station.  Marek is a 2017 honouree of the Forbes 30 Under 30; a list that recognises the most important young entrepreneurs, creative leaders and brightest stars in their respective industries. He holds a Masters in Engineering from Durham University and an Engineering Doctorate from the University of Reading.

Felicity Jones, Partner, Everoze Partners Ltd LLPFelicity Jones Everoze

Felicity leads on energy storage at Everoze, a fast-growing technical and commercial consultancy specialising in renewables and storage. Everoze has supported a number of battery projects that are operational/under construction, including pioneering EFR projects. This work has included technical due diligence, site inspections, procurement advice and acting as Independent Technical Expert. Prior to joining Everoze, Felicity served as Chair of the World Energy Council storage knowledge network. She holds a BA in Philosophy, Politics & Economics from Oxford and MSc in Environmental Technology from Imperial College.

Christopher Towner, Partner, Womble Bond Dickinson (UK) LLPChris Towner

Chris specialises in the commercial aspects of energy projects. He spent six years in the energy and projects team at Herbert Smith, advising a range of investment banks and public sector clients in relation to a wide range of issues connected with the UK electricity and gas markets. Since joining Bond Dickinson in 2006, Chris has specialised in advising renewable energy projects. Chris chairs the RenewableUK Offshore wind delivery group.

Luke Hargreaves, Head of Renewables, Ofgem

Luke graduated from Leeds University in 1995 with a degree in Fuel and Combustion Science. With a career largely focussed on the energy industry, Luke has worked as an offshore drilling engineer for Schlumberger and also for RWE, where he was involved in a number of engineering projects and onsite operations. Luke joined Ofgem in 2006 and, having worked in various parts of the organisation, he currently leads the administration of a number of schemes in the Renewable Electricity directorate. Energy aside, Luke has also worked as a recruitment consultant.