Director of the Office of Fossil Energy: Who Is Steve Winberg?

Sunday, October 01, 2017
Steve Winberg

Steven E. Winberg, who has worked for utility companies for most of his career, was nominated September 2, 2017, to be assistant secretary for fossil energy in the Department of Energy. The Office of Fossil Energy is the federal government’s lead office for coal, natural gas and oil exploration and development. It also manages the Strategic Petroleum Reserve.

 

Winberg earned a B.S. in nuclear science from the State University of New York’s Maritime College in 1978 and later received an MBA from the University of Pittsburgh in 1991.

 

Early on, Winberg was a start-up engineer on coal-fired utility boilers for the engineering firm Foster Wheeler. In 1986, he moved to Consolidated Natural Gas (CNG), working his way up through positions such as manager of co-firing development, director of electric generation and environmental market development and was eventually assistant to the chairman of the company.

 

In 1993, CNG loaned Winberg to be executive director of the newly created Coalition for Gas-based Environmental Solutions, which aimed to lower the emissions standards for natural gas to match those for the coal and oil industries.

 

In 1998, he was named chair of state and regional issues for The Electric Power Supply Association of Washington. He also joined Peoples Natural Gas.

 

Winberg joined a start-up in 2000, serving as director of business development for Clean Fuels Technology. He returned to the utility business in 2002 at Consol Energy. He began as director of project development in the department of research. He was promoted to general manager in 2004 and vice president of research and development, coal conversion and power development in December 2007.

 

Winberg was also Consol’s representative on the board of FutureGen Industrial Alliance, where he also served and secretary/treasurer. The group of electricity generators, coal companies and manufacturers was supposed to build the first coal power plant to capture carbon dioxide and store it underground instead of emitting it in the air. No such commercial plants were built, with Winberg blaming this on poor government support. He was elected chairman of FutureGen in September 2009. A few months later, he joined the board of directors of the Pennsylvania NanoMaterials Commercialization Center.

 

Winberg left Consol in 2014 to become a program manager for Battelle, a nonprofit that develops technology and manages laboratories.

 

Winberg’s wife is named Anne. He is the logistics coordinator of the Pittsburgh Paddlefish dragon boat team and a member of the board of directors of the 3 Rivers Rowing Association.

-Steve Straehley, David Wallechinsky

 

To Learn More:

Official Biography

Former Consol Exec Tapped to Lead Federal Fossil Fuel Office (by Anya Litvak, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)

Q&A: Consol Energy’s Steve Winberg on CCS R&D ‘s and FutureGen 2.0 (Exchange Monitor)Steve

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