Netherlands' renewable energy share decreased in 2021, despite advances in field
New data released by Statistics Netherlands (CBS) shows that the country’s renewable energy share decreased in 2021, amounting to 12 percent of total energy consumption. In 2020, this figure stood at 14 percent, a mark that fulfilled the Netherlands' binding EU target.
A lack of renewable energy imports was a key driver behind this decline. In 2020, renewable energy from abroad accounted for 2.5 percent of the total energy share. In 2021, the country had no such imports and there are no agreements in place to make up this shortfall.
Another important factor behind the decrease is the implementation of the revised EU Renewable Energy Directive. The new directive, which took hold in 2021, ushered in stricter criteria of what constituted biomass. If the 2021 energy share incorporated biomass that is now not deemed fully compliant, the share would rise to 13.4 percent.
Despite a lower overall energy share, the Netherlands saw gains in several key renewable energy fields. Wind energy consumption grew by 36 percent with wind farms able to return to full operation. Overall wind turbine capacity rose by 16 percent due to the growth of onshore farms.
An increase in solar panels created a similar rise in solar energy consumption, which is up 28 percent. The Netherlands' overall solar power capacity grew 31 percent. This growth, however, lags behind that of 2020.