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Aurex Insights: APAC Renewables – Oct 2021

Welcome to Aurex Group's Asia monthly snapshot for the renewable energy industry where we highlight some of the factors and events influencing the industry for talent and businesses. In this issue, our specialists discuss the trend toward smart, dispatchable power as well as a tapping into the expertise of Chris Lo, West Point grad and former Singapore Army Officer, to discuss how companies can cope with workplace burnout when employees are remote.

What people are talking about

Lightsource BP secures USD1.8B, raises target to 25GW by 2025

LYS Energy acquired 100% by Leader Energy

Mega turbines to be deployed in Japan by JRE and wpd (14 & 15MW)

SK E&S plans to be world’s #1 hydrogen producer, targeting 1.3M tons of carbon-neutral LNG and 250,000 tons of blue hydrogen by 2025

AC Energy’s mission is to be the largest publicly listed renewables company in SEA

SunCable received approval to run its power cable through Indonesian waters 

Hong Kong’s Impact Energy Asia Development to build SEA’s largest onshore wind farm, 600MW in Laos, to deliver electricity to Vietnam

Natural gas consumption up 500% in the UK in 2021 and coal coming back due to lack of wind

What we are currently working on

For the full job descriptions regarding the roles below, please contact us directly.

  • Head of Contracts & Claims, Hydropower, Pakistan

  • Chief Engineer, Contracts & Claims Specialist, Hydropower, Pakistan

  • Development Director, Solar + ESS, Australia

  • Legal Counsel, Renewable Energy, South Korea

  • Transaction Manager, North and Southeast Asia

  • Researcher, Low Carbon R&D, Singapore

  • Energy Storage Engineer, APAC

  • Quantitative Analyst, Solar Project Development, Singapore

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Smart, dispatchable power

In today’s rapidly changing renewable energy landscape, with new technologies and more competition, it is becoming more difficult to remain competitive simply by developing standalone solar or wind farms. Today’s markets are calling for more sophistication from developers such as integrations of storage solutions and smart dispatching. 

Because renewables have traditionally been seen as a fluctuating resource that can wreak havoc on power grids, major utilities, and energy retailers tend to keep a mixed portfolio with conventional power assets that can quickly ramp up or shut down. To put it into perspective, coal and nuclear can be ramped up in a few hours, which is useful at times when diminished renewable energy output is predictable (ex: night time when the sun is not shining), natural gas turbines can be ramped up from zero to full output in just a matter of minutes. 

However, there are some renewables that are becoming competitive such as hydroelectric which can be dispatched as fast as 16 seconds, and solar thermal storage which can be dispatched in a matter of minutes, like natural gas. We are also starting to see a rise in not only grid-scale battery storage systems but also the aggregating of batteries into a virtual power plant. 

If we look at Australia, for example, approximately 30% of homes across the nation have rooftop solar systems, totaling about 3.5GW. Battery system uptake also increased by about 20% in 2020 during the COVID-19 pandemic, led by South Australia, and some arguing it is because work-from-home policies shifted the burden of utility bills from companies to employees, making people more conscious of their energy costs and seeking ways to reduce their bills. 

High adoption of solar + battery storage has opened the doors for utilities, developers, and even technology developers to become interested in aggregating this power into a virtual power plant. As such, we are seeing more demand for business development and origination staff who have a sophisticated knowledge of power markets and power trading. Similarly, Aurex Group is starting to see demand for candidates with storage integration backgrounds and expertise in batteries.

How to cope with Workplace Burnout when your employees are remote?

To tackle this tough question, we are tapping on the expertise of Chris Lo, one of my fellow West Point alums in Singapore, though Chris’s background is much more impressive than mine having graduated in the Top 1% of his class and served as an officer in the Singapore Army for over 20 years.

Now, Chris works at AlleVoMinds, which has innovated a simple way to assess psycho-social hazards in the workplace and help business leaders to address people-relevant workplace challenges. 

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Aurex: Thank you, Chris, for joining us today. We have heard from many of our clients that workplace burnout is a topic on their minds but that they do not know how to tackle it. Tell us, why is workplace burnout a topic that must be talked about?

Chris: Companies are at risk of losing more employees with the current CoVID-19 pandemic and it is affecting not just HR but the company’s bottom lines.With further decreased recruiting budgets, it is important that HR teams find cost-effective solutions that demonstrate a strong return of investment (ROI) and to make use of technology that is well integrated and analytics-driven while maintaining the current pool of existing employees.Delays in projects and losses are also causing existing employees to take on more work-related stress due to shortage of manpower, longer work hours, and carrying out unexpected workloads of their co-workers. 

Assignments given to an untrained or disinterested employee may lead to employee burn-out, and the cost to the business can be significant. Employee burn-out contributes to losses in workplace productivity arising from workplace accidents, absenteeism, and abuses. 

At the HR level, employee burn-out contributes to employee disengagement and turnover, which impacts the cost of rehiring and retraining, as well as further project delays and increased negative impact on remaining employees. 

Aurex: What exactly is workplace burnout?

Chris: The World Health Organization and the International Classification for Diseases (ICD-11) defines burn-out as phenomena in the occupational context that creates “a syndrome resulting from chronic workplace stress” that causes an employee to feel exhausted, disengaged, and/or reduced professional efficacy.

Something significant took place in June 2021. The International Standards Organisation (ISO) published ISO 45003 that provided guidelines for managing psychosocial risks to promote better psychological health and safety at work.

The effect of psychosocial hazards can negatively impact a person’s physical and mental health. Some people may develop negative coping behaviours to cope with psychosocial hazards such as alcohol or drug abuse which can possibly lead to addictions that affect their well-being in the workplace. 

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Potential negatives that can occur are:

  • Loss of employees

  • Mental breakdowns/burn-outs in employees

  • Ineffective training negatively affecting corporate leaders’ successes

  • Failure to attract adequate new employees to the profession​

Aurex: That sounds like pretty serious business and something businesses would want to know if it is affecting their staff. I understand you have a way to find out. Can you tell me about it?

Chris: Under normal circumstances, stress and disengagement in employees can only be known if they are observed or reported by the employees themselves. If the stress they are facing is ignored, or if employees do not realize they are experiencing stress symptoms, there is a multitude of negative effects which will occur. 

At AlleVoMinds, we innovated a simpler way to assess psychosocial hazards. We adopt an employee-centric focus on the psychosocial relationship factors that impact his/her workplace experience.

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By investing 5 minutes to take our 23-question survey, we can give you an early indication of the causal factors contributing to your employee’s workplace burn-out risks. These questions assess employees’ work engagement, emotional resilience, and work-related emotions from an individual perspective. 

Aurex: That sounds great. Once you get the results, what is next? 

Chris: Next, it is critical to assess and understand his/her Core Potentials to visualize the roots of their stress and disengagement.

The Core Potentials look at how well the employee’s skills, qualifications, and experiences align to the position he is in, the organization (ex: work style and teamwork), and individual experience factors. 

From this touchpoint, we spark the necessary conversation with you for greater insights into addressing your People-relevant workplace challenges. In short, we give your business leadership insights to discover the unseen and unheard voices of your employees that cause friction within the company. In conclusion, workplace burn-out can be minimized through proper analysis and identification of employees’ core potential. By adopting an employee-centricapproach to the company’s existing system and recruitment process, you can create a more healthy, vibrant, and happier workplace for everyone. 

To receive your personalised workplace burn-out indication report, please reach out to us directly by emailing info@aurexgroup.com. 

Aurex: It is great that there are resources like AlleVoMinds can turn to in order to take an analytical approach to assessing and addressing workplace burn-out before it negatively impacts the business. How can people get in touch? 

Chris: You can get in touch with me directly at Chris.Lo@thesafe2go.com or through our website here: AlleVoMinds

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Market Moves

  • Jens Borgsted Ofelt joins RWE as President of APAC based in Taiwan from GIG where he was Commercial Director and Bragg Chung joins RWE as President of Taiwan from EOLFI Greater China where he was CEO.

  • Eduardo Sierra joins Saferay in Japan as Chief Operating Officer from Schneider Electric.

  • Pratyush Thakur takes over as Country Manager of India for Blueleaf Energy transferring from within Macquarie Capital.

  • Krishna Danda joins major trading house Vitol as Director of Renewables in the USA from Saudi Aramco.

  • Martin Tzou moves from EDF Energy where he was Senior Business Development Manager to Air Liquide where he is now Director of Strategy and Planning for Hydrogen in Taiwan.

  • Down under, Amy Lane joins BayWa r.e. as a Developer from juwi where she was Head of Development.

  • In Taiwan, Sam Hung joins JERA as General Manager of Bid Management in Taiwan from wpd where he was Director of Project Development.

  • Mainstream Renewable Power secures Kanaka Africadang Winoto as Senior Business Development Manager in Indonesia from ENGIE.

  • Matt van der Merwe moves from Canadian Solar to Vestas where he is Project Development Manager in Australia.

  • Elaine Aldrige joins Spark Renewables as Development Manager from UPC/AC Energy where she was in a similar role.

  • Aquila Capital expands in Singapore hiring Vinoth Mannan Muruganandam as Solar Engineering Manager for APAC from Keppel Renewable Energy where he was Engineering Manager.

  • In Korea, Shintak Choi joins Hyundai E&C as Senior Manager for Wind from SK E&S where he was Project Manager for Wind.

  • In Taiwan, Henry Hu joins Orsted as Commercial Analyst in Taiwan from Deloitte.

  • Also moving out from a Big 4 consultancy, Daryl Aw Yeong leaves KPMG Singapore for Climate Fund Managers where he is an Investment Analyst.

We always look forward to keeping in touch and exchanging ideas, insights, and opinions. If you are a company considering hiring, we welcome the opportunity to present our services and capabilities. If you are a candidate, please check our jobs page or reach out to us to discuss your background, skills, and future aspirations.

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Amy Marietta 
Consultant, Power Generation, Asia 

Aurex Singapore Pte Ltd 

amy.marietta@aurexgroup.com 

+65 9424 0023 

12 Marina View, #11-01 Asia Square Tower 2, Singapore 018961 

EA 18S9493 | R1878463