Virginia Graham set up Renewable Energy Assurance Ltd (REAL), a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Renewable Energy Association, in early 2006. REAL administers a number of consumer codes and certification schemes in the renewable energy sector. These include the Renewable Energy Consumer Code for small-scale renewables, the Biofertiliser Certification Scheme for digestate from anaerobic digestion, the Green Gas Certification Scheme for biomethane injected to the gas grid and the Compost Certification Scheme for quality organic compost. Until July REAL worked in partnership with Gemserv in providing the Green Deal Oversight and Registration Body, with specific responsibility for monitoring and enforcing compliance with the Green Deal Code of Practice.
Before setting up REAL, Virginia worked for the GB energy regulator, Ofgem, for six years as Director of Environmental and Social Issues. There she was responsible for developing the regulator’s sustainable energy policy, and setting up the administration of the Government’s environmental programmes including the Renewables Obligation, the Climate Change Levy Exemptions and the Carbon Emissions Reduction Target.
Virginia has degrees in politics, economics and management, and has worked on environmental, consumer and social issues throughout her career, both in the EU and the UK. She has recently served as Chair of two charities, Global Action Plan and the Eaga Charitable Trust, as Vice-Chair of a further charity, National Energy Action, and was until July a member of the Green Energy Supply Certification Scheme Panel.’