Danish diplomat says diversified energy sources to bring PH abundant, reliable energy

Danish Ambassador to the Philippines Franz-Michael Skjold- Mellbin emphasized that a good mix of diversified energy sources such as nuclear, renewables, and energy storage could ensure the country with abundant, cheap, and reliable energy.

Photo courtesy of DOST-STII

Mellbin made the statement during the opening of the 50th Atomic Energy Week (AEW) of the Department of Science and Technology-Philippine Nuclear Research Institute (DOST-PNRI).

With the theme: “Agham at Teknolohiyang Pangnukleyar: Kabalikat sa Maunlad at Matatag na Kinabukasan”, the five-day celebration aims to highlight the various research and development (R&D) efforts and initiatives of DOST-PNRI towards maximizing the beneficial use of nuclear technologies and applications, including those in the energy sector.

Mellbin served as keynote speaker during the event where he underscored immediately the valuable contributions of revolutionary nuclear technologies to various fields such as energy, health, and agriculture.

He pointed out that one of the unfortunate discussions in recent years is a dichotomy of some kind of opposition between different kinds of energy technologies which should have not been in the first place. He added that the future will bring energy technologies in a higher integration than we have seen before and there is a space and a need for different kinds of technologies.

“Countries want reliable, flexible, secure energy systems, and energy supply and the best way to achieve that is to have flexibility. To have options, to have several kinds of inputs into your energy system. And the future energy systems will consist not only of a variable input but also a much higher degree of system integration. So, it is not just a question of producing electricity but it will also be a question of how do you build a system that stores electricity,” he explained.

The Danish diplomat also shared how sector coupling works in his home country, Denmark, when they can produce energy and power at the same time.

“It (sector coupling) is something my own country, Denmark, has perfected. So that when we produce electricity, we harvest the heat, put it into hot water, heating systems, and centralized cooling systems and distribute it on a massive scale. These kinds of things will be further developed over the next years. We will see many new energy solutions emerging,” he added.

Mellbin believes that some energy technologies will be more suitable for certain situations, countries, and energy realities than others. Still, according to him, time will tell what is more suitable for all of the country and what kind of mixes it will end up with.

He also stated out that there is no doubt that nuclear research has always given a great future in any country. He zeroed in on key reasons why doing nuclear is not only for socioeconomic benefits but also for tackling the socioeconomic challenges that come with nuclear research and energy or the use of nuclear radiation in medicine, in developing better crops, and in other solutions that nuclear science can contribute significantly.

Amb. Mellbin also gave credit to the Philippines, specifically to DOST-PNRI for actively making research agreements with different countries on nuclear-related research efforts.