nETHERLANDS Solar and wind can generate enough electricity in 2030 to cover roughly 60% of the Dutch electricity demand, according to a joint study by Nuon and Greenpeace. To enable this, the Dutch government must hold on to its present policy, also after the post-2023 period when the current Energy Agreement expires.

The independent agency SEO Economic Research has conducted the study which examines what incentives are needed to increase the production of renewable electricity from wind power and solar energy to 75 TWh by 2030 – seven years after the current Dutch Energy Agreement expires.,. According to the report the most effective instruments to achience the goal are operation subsidies and net metering of solar production. The current policy is therefore estimated to be a good foundation for a renewable energy policy until 2030.

Fast track to renewables
Due to the Dutch Energy Agreement, the Netherlands are now in a fast track to increase renewable energy levels. The new study indicates that this pace can be maintained even after the Energy Agreement expires. Increased electric mobility, more electric heating and a greater focus on smart networks for variable levels of renewable energy should contribute to achieving a new national goal for 2030.

Stijn van den Heuvel, Nuon’s Public and Regulatory Affairs Manager, comments:
"The Energy Agreement is an important first step in the transition to sustainable energy supply in the Netherlands. With the new direction now set, we want to keep up the pace. Along with sustainability, this provides investment security for us and all other companies committed to the energy transition."

Settlement results in a joint report
The study is a result of the agreement that was concluded with a number of NGOs in relation to the permit process for the Magnum power plant back in 2011. Environmentalists then disputed the construction of a coal gasification unit. Van den Heuvel explains:
“Nuon was prepared to refrain from building the Magnum coal gasification unit and maintain the gas-fuelled plant, if objections to its construction were ended. The timing of this study fits well in the public debate in the Netherlands and also with the new strategic direction.”

More research needed
The report also shows that there are enough locations available and that there is sufficient time to complete the measures. If implemented they would lead to a doubling of the targets for wind and solar energy production compared to what has been agreed upon in the Energy Agreement. Van den Heuvel explains:
“Further research is therefore needed into the policy that is required to guarantee the compatibility with the electricity system of the extra production of renewable electricity from sun and wind. The respective policy needs to underpin strengthened connections with other countries (interconnection), demand-side management, storage, reserve and balancing capacity.“

The study (in Dutch)

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