David Besner takes on role heading energy institute

The provincial government has appointed David Besner as the chair of the New Brunswick Energy Institute for a three-year term.

Chemical engineer has been leading group on interim basis since resignation of Louis LaPierre in fall

The provincial government has appointed David Besner as the chair of the New Brunswick Energy Institute for a three-year term.

David Besner has agreed to a three-year term as chair of the New Brunswick Energy Institute that advises government on the science surrounding emerging energy technologies, such as shale gas extraction. (Radio-Canada)
​Besner had been acting as the body's interim chair since last October, when Louis LaPierre resgined after his academic credentials were called into question.

Besner is a professional chemical engineer and former assistant deputy minister in the provincial government.

Prior to being the institute's interim chair, he was a member of its scientific advisory council.

The energy institute was created as an independent body by the provincial government with a mandate to examine the science surrounding emerging energy possibilities, including the possible development of a shale gas industry in New Brunswick.

"I am honoured to accept the role of energy institute chair," Besner said in a statement released through the government's communications service.

"The institute has a vital role to play in the provincial energy landscape and I am pleased to be leading a team of world-class experts and scientists who are dedicated to researching topics that could have a significant impact."

Energy Minister Craig Leonard said he was pleased that Besner accepted the assignment.

"With an ambitious research agenda in the months ahead, I know that [the institute] will benefit from his experience and expertise," said Leonard.