Former Macra president appointed to top job for bioenergy

Former Macra na Feirme President Sean Finan has been appointed as the new chief executive officer of the Irish Bioenergy Association (IrBEA).

A chartered engineer and part-time farmer from Ballinlough, Castlerea, Co Roscommon, Finan holds an engineering degree from NUI Galway as well as a Certificate in Agriculture.

He brings to the role a “wealth of experience gleaned in various positions within many community, voluntary, representative and statutory organisations at a local, national and European level over the years”, according to the IrBEA.

Prior to joining IrBEA, Finan worked in engineering and management positions with John Sisk & Son over a 12-year period.

He took a two-year secondment from Sisk in 2015 to take up the role of 35th national president of Macra na Feirme. He also currently holds the voluntary post of vice president of the European Council of Young Farmers, CEJA.

Founded in May 1999, IrBEA’s role is to promote the bioenergy industry and to develop the sector. The organisation is a self-governing association of voluntary members.

The group has a diverse membership including farmers, foresters, fuel suppliers and energy development companies, among others.

Commenting on his new position and the challenges that lie ahead, Finan said: “I relish the challenge and opportunity which leading IrBEA presents.

The organisation has an invaluable and key strategic role to play in representing and advocating for the bioenergy sector on the island of Ireland and dealing with challenges such as climate change, emissions reduction and the provision of more renewable energy sources into the future.

“In my role as CEO of IrBEA, I will work with all stakeholders to ensure a sustainable future in bioenergy and to strategically position bioenergy to play a significant role in Ireland’s Sustainability Renewable Energy Roadmap,” he said.

IrBEA president Des O’Toole said: “On behalf of IrBEA, I’m delighted to welcome Sean Finan to the Association. I wish him the best of luck and every success in his new role.

“Sean brings with him a wealth of experience and I believe he will show strong leadership to the organisation at this pivotal juncture as Ireland transitions to renewable and away from fossil fuels.”