Dutch use more renewable energy but still trail in Europe

Photo: DutchNews.nl

Renewable sources accounted for 17% of the energy used in the Netherlands last year, up from 15% in 2022, national statistics agency CBS said on Friday.

The increase is largely due to wind and solar power, and the use of biomass, which has been hit by controversy in recent years, was down. The result means the country has beaten the 16% target set down in the national energy agreement.

The use of wind power rose 25% last year which is largely down to an increase in capacity – 10% on land and 55% offshore. Solar power usage was up 17% on a 24% increase in capacity. Although 2023 was sunny the amount of sunshine was below that of 2022, the CBS points out.

Energy from biomass, produced by burning organic matter such as wood, still accounts for the biggest share of renewable energy use but fell 3% on 2022.

Its use by industry, however, was up 61%. Biomass is considered a renewable energy source by the EU, even though the use of wood chips in particular is considered controversial.

Despite the increase and meeting the target, the Netherlands is still low on the EU renewable energy rankings. On average, 23% of energy used in the EU comes from sustainable sources and only Luxemburg, Belgium, Malta and Ireland use less renewable energy than the Netherlands.

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