Today, in Brussels, Andreia Carreiro was awarded the European Sustainable Energy Award 2022 in the Woman in Energy category. The award recognises women who lead outstanding activities that, if replicated, help to advance the clean energy transition in Europe. Particular attention is placed on efforts in driving the gender mainstreaming agenda and supporting equality and equal opportunities in the energy sector. European Commissioner for Energy, Kadri Simson, met with the four award winners to congratulate them at the awards ceremony on the first day of the European Sustainable Energy Week (EUSEW), the biggest annual event dedicated to renewables and energy efficiency in Europe.
Andreia is a pioneer in technology uptake and public policies in the Azores. As the former Regional Director for Energy of the Azores, Andreia was responsible for the development of the energy policy strategy for the islands’ energy autonomy based on natural resources and emerging technologies. She also served as Energy Advisor to the Deputy Minister and Secretary of State for Energy, designing public policy strategies on energy efficiency, self-consumption, and energy communities, as well as for the development of programmes in Portugal’s Recovery and Resilience Plan.
As a proponent of gender equality in the sustainable energy field, Andreia also co-founded Women in Energy Portugal, an initiative developed under the Future Energy Leaders programme, of the Portugal World Energy Council. Given that women remain largely underrepresented in the energy sector, through this initiative Andreia and her fellow members have embarked on a mission to bridge the gender gap.
In her work, Andreia is most inspired by her home region of the Azores: ‘Islands are the most vulnerable spaces impacted by climate change. In the Azores, we need to have many more companies working in sustainable energy because it is so important in fighting climate change.’
It is this belief that led Andreia to pursue an ambitious academic career focused on understanding the complexity of sustainable systems, which has culminated with a PhD in Sustainable Energy Systems from the MIT Portugal Programme.
Today, Andreia is using her skills to advance innovative projects and energy solutions, create strategic partnerships and advise on policy at Cleanwatts, a scale-up climatech company committed to simplifying, amplifying and accelerating energy decarbonisation for companies and communities around the world. Most recently, she co-founded Kinergy, a start-up in the Azores that aims to contribute to the energy transition in islands. Its special focus is to develop energy communities to produce, consume and share clean energy in neighborhoods at lower prices, bringing economic, social and environmental benefits.
In supporting the development of innovative solutions and new policies, as well as the establishment of energy communities, Andreia is moving the dial on the European Commission’s Clean energy for all Europeans package and delivering on the European Green Deal. Her actions to establish renewable energy technologies in the Azores are also supporting the REPowerEU Plan to accelerate the clean energy transition and increase Europe’s energy independence.
Andreia Carreiro was one of three finalists shortlisted for the European Sustainable Energy Awards 2022 in the Woman in Energy category. The other finalists were Apostolina Tsaltampasi and Britta Schaffmeister.
The European Sustainable Energy Awards recognise outstanding individuals and projects for their innovation and efforts in energy efficiency and renewables. Prizes are awarded following a public vote in four categories: Innovation, Local Energy Action, Woman in Energy, and Young Energy Trailblazer. Finalists are chosen by a high-level jury from a shortlist of the year’s most successful projects and actions for clean, secure and efficient energy.