The move comes just days after Cornelius announced he was stepping down from his long-standing role as CEO of Edinburgh-based renewable energy developer Simec Atlantis Energy which operates the MeyGen tidal energy project in the Pentland Firth.
Cornelius, who began his career as a commercial diver, had joined GEG’s board as a non-executive director a year ago and now takes up what is a new role at the company.
GEG said Cornelius has deep sector knowledge across the energy sector including offshore renewables, oil and gas, waste-to-energy, hydropower and the emerging hydrogen sector. It added he has played a significant role in supporting the development of GEG’s Port of Nigg in the Cromarty Firth as a leading renewables hub.
Cornelius said he was looking to working with the team at the energy construction and services group, which employs over 1,500 people, to build a “UK energy services powerhouse that will be at the forefront of the green recovery”.
“GEG’s reputation for the delivery of high-quality services across the full spectrum of energy sectors, coupled with the strategic location of their assets makes this one of the most exciting roles in the UK energy sector,” he said.
GEG’s chairman, Roy MacGregor, said he was confident Cornelius would lead the group “through this next phase of the energy transition with a clear strategy and focus, utilising our long history in all energy markets, cementing the group’s place within the clean energy industry for years to come”.
Cornelius, who was recently honoured with a lifetime achievement award by Scottish Renewables, today takes up a new role as a senior adviser to Simec Atlantis with Graham Reid taking over as its new chief executive.
GEG, which operates facilities across the Highlands and in Aberdeen, has been involved in many of Scotland’s largest renewable energy projects in recent years.
In November it appointed Iain Sinclair to a new role of executive director of renewables and energy transition with plans to launch a base in Edinburgh.
Sinclair, a former professional rugby player, previously held managing director positions at Forth Steel and Murray Plate Group.