Coalition divided over wind power: report says ‘stop building turbines’

The ruling parties VVD and Labour are divided over the future of wind power following the publication of a new report which called for a five-year moratorium on plans to build more wind turbines.

The cabinet and provinces agreed earlier this year to build at least 1,000 new wind turbines but the VVD now wants to drop the plan, Nos television reports.

The macro-economic planning bureau CPB said in its report there should be a halt in the wind turbine programme because the economic crisis has depressed demand for electricity. ‘There is also talk of overcapacity, and every expansion would be loss-making,’ the CPB said.


The VVD wants to follow the CPB’s recommendations but Labour is opposed. In the coalition agreement, the two parties committed themselves to ensuring 16% of the energy used in the Netherlands comes from sustainable sources by 2020. Green power currently accounts for just 4.5% of energy use.

‘We have a social contract,’ Labour MP Jan Vos is quoted as saying by Nos television. ‘Building schools costs money as well.’

MPs are due to debate the wind turbine programme with ministers on Thursday.


The Dutch environmental assessment agency PBL said on Monday the Netherlands’ environmental policy needs a complete overhaul because it is out of date in many areas.

The policy of successive governments has been short-term without a vision for the future, the report said.

For example, old coal-fired power stations are being used to burn biomass to meet 2020 green energy targets but nothing is being invested in developing a long-term sustainable energy supply, the report stated.

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