34 weeks after the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released a special report on the action that would be required to keep global temperatures within a 1.5 degrees Celsius target, i.e. global carbon emissions  to fall 50 percent by 2030 and reach net zero by 2050,, Northern Europe became one of the hottest places on earth for a few days.  The latest analysis from the World Weather Attribution network indicated that Belgium, Germany and the Netherlands  saw new temperature records, of  41.8C, 41.5C and 40.7C, respectively, with Paris experiencing the  hottest ever day on July 25, 2019, with 42.6C. According to Dr Geert Jan van Oldenborgh, a member of the WWA network from the Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute “….it was much more extreme than any other heatwave we’ve looked at over the last few years. [It impacted] France, Luxembourg, Belgium, the Netherlands, western Germany, eastern England and also parts of Scandinavia – and at the moment it’s inducing a large melting event over Greenland.

Recent weather events as well as the continuing phasing out of fossil power, will need to be reflected in  the new EU Commission priorities. As gender balance seems high on the new Commission president’s, as is climate change already when she topped that as top of the list priority as Germany’s defense minsiter, a quick scan across the board of EU Directorates,  national ministries and energy companies results a rapidly  increasing list  of  climate (and hydrogen!) savvy female leaders in EU’s energy transition:

As of August 1,2019 Ditte Juul-Jørgensen is expected to bring a new breeze of market-proof, Danish?, clean energy reality as new Director General of Energy, having served as a Head of Unit in Trade and Sustainable development from 2007 – 2011 and recently as chief of the cabinet of ” strongheaded” Competitition Commisioner Margrethe Vestager.

German Environment minister Svenja Schulze on July 10, 2019 mentioned hydrogen in her announcement of a  Power to X International Secretariat to further the decarbonization in Germany.

Manon van Beek as CEO of TenneT one of the largest eletric TSO’s in Europe is spearheading the energy transition in NL and parts of Germany through linking electircity and gas grids  deploying hydrogen.

Marjan van Loon, president SHELL Netherlands is drving a Toyota Mirai to her official meetings since 2017.

ENGIE  CEO Isabelle Kocher has been a stearn supporter of hydrogen: “because hydrogen is used for……balancing of the networks, greening of transport, industrial processes and heat production, it becomes the key to 100% renewable territories which harness the principles of the circular economy.”

Valérie Bouillon- Delporte, FCH JU chairwoman of the FCH JU Board recenrly was awarded the Transformons la France 2019 Award. 

Europe’s youngest head of state Katrin Jacobsdorttir of Iceland talked up climate and gender recently in an interview with Time magazine highlighting her 34! step plan to carbon nuertrality in 2040, ten years ahead of her still undecisive EU colleagues….

However a 2019 International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) study covering 144 countries explains that women make up only 32% of the workforce in renewable energie industries, more than the 22% in the oil and gas industry. 45% of those have administrative positions compared to 28% of engineering positions. Female board members in the energy industry remain a minority as well, hoovering around 25% .