Interview with Marieke Palm of Scrooge Sustainable Energy
Engineer Marieke Palm’s career switch alone was disruptive. As she puts it, she comes from the ‘dirty’ industry. ‘I spent 25 years happily working in gas and oil exploration for Shell. I wanted to go where no one else did!’ But Marieke opted to switch oil and gas for sustainable energy and became an independent advisor, project manager, businesswoman, and investor in sustainable energy. She operates under the name Scrooge Sustainable Energy. She is also building a 30-hectare solar farm on her own land.
‘Put your money where your mouth is’
What was it that made Marieke arrive at her disruptive decision? ‘We are going to need oil and gas for a long time, but we still have to move towards sustainable energy. I was seeing a great many opportunities and companies emerging with innovative concepts in this area. So I thought, “put your money where your mouth is” and set up her own business. I was also seeing a great many companies struggling with the concept of sustainable energy.’
‘Not just recommending a few panels on the roof’
And she’s now advising precisely those companies. Large companies like Shell and smaller ones like farming businesses. How? ‘I always try to gain as accurate as possible an overview of what is happening and what is possible and then try to give companies a range of options. We then put our heads together and look at which options best match their needs. And that’s not just recommending a few panels on the roof, but listening carefully to what it is the energy will be used for. For the company’s own activities, for others? Together with others? In a corporation? Or selling to a large energy club?’