His Excellency Franz Michael Skjold Mellbin, the Danish Ambassador to the Philippines and PalauOn May 3, 2024, the Philippine National Oil Company (PNOC) had the honor of hosting His Excellency Franz Michael Skjold Mellbin, the Danish Ambassador to the Philippines and Palau, as the distinguished keynote speaker for the monthly Ignition Talks event. Ambassador Mellbin shared invaluable insights from Denmark’s pioneering journey in sustainable energy development, offering a roadmap for the Philippines’ energy future.

Ambassador Mellbin began by highlighting the crucial role of a stable geopolitical environment in ensuring energy security. This foundation is essential for developing robust and sustainable energy solutions. Drawing from Denmark’s extensive experience, he underscored the need for peace and energy conservation as pillars for sustainable energy growth.

Denmark has set ambitious targets to reduce CO2 emissions by 70% by 2030 and to achieve climate neutrality by 2050. These goals are supported by advanced energy policies that balance economic growth with energy resilience. Ambassador Mellbin noted that Denmark’s journey began with strong state support for renewable energy projects, including the establishment of the world’s first offshore wind farm in 1991. This commitment has positioned Denmark as a global leader in renewable energy.

Comparing Denmark’s experience to the Philippines, Ambassador Mellbin emphasized the vast potential for renewable energy development in the Philippines, given its rich energy mix, which includes geothermal, hydro, biomass, solar, wind, and waste-to-energy options. He stressed the importance of long-term energy planning and political consensus in attracting foreign investment and ensuring sustainable growth.

Ambassador Mellbin outlined several key actions for the Philippines to achieve sustainable energy growth:


    1. Long-Term Planning and Political Consensus: Developing a balanced energy mix requires strategic planning and adjustments across various policy areas.

    1. Public-Private Partnerships (PPP): Effective PPPs can facilitate the creation of business-friendly regulations and programs, driving innovation and investment.

    1. Just Transition: Ensuring a fair transition involves creating jobs, fair distribution, and pricing in the energy sector.

PNOC President and CEO Oliver B. Butalid expressed deep gratitude to Ambassador Mellbin for his enlightening presentation. He highlighted the broader perspectives gained and the clarity provided regarding energy policies. Inspired by Denmark’s model, President Butalid reaffirmed PNOC’s commitment to addressing the trilemma of energy affordability, security, and sustainability.

In alignment with Denmark’s model, PNOC plans to launch several initiatives aimed at boosting renewable energy adoption and sustainability. These include the development of offshore wind projects, enhancing energy efficiency measures, and fostering public-private partnerships to drive innovation. PNOC aims to mirror Denmark’s success by integrating advanced technologies and policies tailored to the Philippines’ unique energy landscape.

The Ignition Talks event featuring Ambassador Mellbin underscored the importance of international collaboration and shared experiences in advancing sustainable energy solutions for a brighter and greener future.