The board of the Initiative Energien Speichern e.V. (INES) has reconstituted itself. Carsten Haack (Trianel Gasspeicher Epe GmbH & Co. KG) takes over the chairmanship. His deputy is Peter Schmidt (EWE Gasspeicher GmbH). Michael Schmöltzer (Uniper Energy Storage GmbH) and Catherine Gras (Storengy Deutschland GmbH) complete the four-member board.
On January 14, 2022, the board of the Initiative Energien Speichern e.V. (INES) was constituted in its first board meeting of the year. Carsten Haack was elected as the new chairman of the board and the previous deputy chairman Peter Schmidt was confirmed in his office again. Furthermore, in the board election for the current two-year term of office at the general meeting in October, the previous board member Michael Schmöltzer was re-elected, and Catherine Gras was elected for the first time. As a newly elected board member, Catherine Gras brings her expertise to strengthen the future viability of gas storage facilities: "Hydrogen will play an important role in the energy mix of the future. It needs to be stored in large quantities and in the short term. I see great potential in adapting or expanding existing gas storage facilities to store hydrogen."
The previous chairman of the board, Bernd Protze (VNG Gasspeicher GmbH), did not stand for re-election. Commenting on his decision, Bernd Protze says: “Founding and building up INES has brought me great joy. With the association, we have given the storage industry in its market role an identity that is now indispensable. After almost eight years of voluntary work, however, the time had come for me to take on other challenges more intensively again.”
The new chairman of the board, Carsten Haack, states: “Without Bernd Protze, one of the founding fathers of INES, INES would not exist in its current form as the strong voice of the German gas and hydrogen storage industry. On this basis, as the new chairman, I want to focus on further improving the diverse applications of storage facilities, whether large or small, in terms of optional infrastructure development and utilization. In doing so, I look forward to future collaboration with old and new colleagues on the board.”
The 20th legislative period has begun with the signing of the coalition agreement as the foundation and starting point of the new federal government. Not only because of the governing coalition, but especially against the background of societal requirements, this legislative period will be strongly characterized by the energy transition. The INES board will align the activities of INES with the societal requirements and related energy and climate policy goals of the new federal government.
On behalf of the entire board Carsten Haack explains: “Gas and hydrogen storage systems are in particular demand not only these days. In an energy system based on clean energies, storage will continue to be an integral part in the future. INES will work with the new federal government in a constructive and results-orientated manner. Not only so that the industry can manage the necessary transformation, but especially to make substantial contributions to the implementation of the energy transition. The coalition agreement provides a great basis for initiating this storage turnaround. We are therefore looking forward to the tasks ahead.“