Dutch power stations used a record amount of coal in the past five months, despite government pledges to curb CO2 reductions.
The use of coal was almost 33% up on the previous three years and led to a 4% rise in CO2 emissions, the Volkskrant says on Thursday, quoting figures from the national statistics office CBS.
One reason for the rise is that coal is replacing gas as a fuel of choice. In addition, the cold weather in April had an impact, the CBS said.
Sjoerd Marbus, spokesman for the Dutch energy producers’ association, said the increasing use of coal is not something the companies welcome. ‘This development… and the CO2 emissions which it generates, is undesirable in our view,’ he told the paper.
An agreement reached on cutting pollution in the Netherlands between the government and energy firms includes closing five old power stations by July 2017.
Environmental groups want this to be speeded up. The Netherlands has a target of 22% sustainable energy production by 2020 but this is unlikely to be reached, experts say.