Gender balance needed in wind energy industry, IRENA says

Wind energy, like other parts of the global energy industry, remains largely male-dominated. Yet the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) says opportunities exist to improve the gender balance, make greater use of women’s skills, and entrench wind power as part of an inclusive and sustainable energy system for the future.

IRENA has released a brief – Wind Energy: A Gender Perspective — that tracks the presence of women across the wind energy value chain. Based on a survey of more than a thousand individuals and organizations, it examines female representation, gender-inclusive policies, and perceptions of gender bias in the industry. 

Some findings from the brief:

  • Women represent only 21% of the wind energy workforce, compared to 32% in renewables overall and 22% in traditional energy industries like oil and gas. 
  • Perceptions of gender roles and cultural-social norms form a major barrier to gender equality.
  • Perceived wage inequalities are lower in wind energy (40%) than in the overall economy (68%).
  • Women are generally perceived to possess valuable skills and knowledge.
  • Europe and North America show the highest share of women in wind energy jobs, at 26%.

IRENA conducted the survey jointly with the Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC) and the Global Women’s Network for the Energy Transition (GWNET). 

The topic of workforce diversity is the focus of the Powered by Diversity Lunch taking place January 29 at the DISTRIBUTECH International event. Click here to learn more and to sign up.


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