GroenLinks, SP and PvdA, the three largest left-wing parties in the Tweede Kamer, together presented an alternative budget that puts "people above multinationals" on Wednesday. They call for more investments in society and in the "livelihood of all Dutch people", Het Parool reports.
The government is structurally allocating an extra 100 million euros for making social rental homes more sustainable. Housing corporations will receive this amount annually starting next year, sources around the cabinet told RTL Nieuws.
The extra investment will officially be announced on Budget Day, on September 20th, according to the broadcaster. In the coalition agreement the government already promised housing corporations 100 million euros structurally to make their homes more sustainable.
Festival Milkshake will only be selling vegetarian food at its seventh edition on July 28th and 29th in Amsterdam, the organizers announced over the weekend. The decision was met with some strong reactions. "We are really surprised about that", organizer Marieke Samallo said to RTL Nieuws.
"We didn't invent the simple solution", Samallo said. "The Digital Festival in Amsterdam hasn't served meat in three years. We are now also taking our responsibility."
A majority in the Tweede Kamer wants the government to promise that the Binnenhof in The Hague will be gas-free after the large-scale renovations set to start in 2020. State Secretary Raymond Knops of Home Affairs and Kingdom Relations will do his best, but won't make any promises, he said in a parliamentary debate about the Binnenhof renovations on Wednesday, NOS reports.
D66 parliamentarian Salima Belhaj thinks that the Dutch military must be made more sustainable, for example by using hybrid trucks instead of diesel or letting soldiers on mission grow part of their food there. She is submitting a set of proposals on how to achieve this to Minister Ank Bijleveld of Defense on Tuesday, she said in an interview with newspaper Trouw.
Utrecht scores the best of all Dutch cities when it comes to sustainability, according to a study by Natuur & Milieu published on Tuesday. Amsterdam came in a close second, followed by Alkmaar.
Crowdfunding, crowd financing, and crowd investing in the Netherlands showed strong growth of 31 percent last year compared to 2016 figures when 170 million euros was raised. A total of 223 million euros was raised through Dutch crowd initiatives last year, which financed over 5,300 separate actions, according to an analysis from CrowdfundingCijfers.nl
Working with a 13 million euro budget provided by the Dutch government, Studio Roosergaarde of light artist Daan Roosegaarde turned the 32 kilometer long iconic Afsluitdijk into a beautiful and sustainable art installation with three separate projects - Gates of Light, Windvogel and Glowing Nature.
The provinces of Friesland and Groningen, with rail manager ProRail, plan to start testing a train running on hydrogen next year. The provinces hope that hydrogen will prove to be a cheap and sustainable alternative to the diesel trains currently running between Leeuwarden and Groningen, the Volkskrant reports.
After over 200 days of government formation talks, the Rutte III cabinet's government agreement is as good as done. The VVD, CDA, D66 and ChristenUnie reached agreements on the last major issues and the agreement is expected to be presented next week. The new government plans to invest more in education, defense, police and sustainability, the Volkskrant reported on Wednesday night.
The Netherlands strives for a strong United Nations in a world that is safe and sustainable, Prime Minister Mark Rutte said in his speech at the UN General Assembly in New York on Wednesday. As a temporary member of the UN Security Council, the Netherlands will dedicate itself to those goals next year, the Dutch Prime Minister said, according to RTL Nieuws.
Rutte considers a strong UN essential. He advocated for the reforms and adjustments UN leader Antonio Guterres is working on. The Netherlands wants better cooperation between UN agencies, he said.
In the first half of this year the Dutch government gave subsidies to a record number of over 4,500 renewable energy projects, the Ministry of Economic Affairs reported on Monday. The subsidies involved a total of over 5.8 billion euros, ANP reports.
Compared to the second half of last year, the number of renewable energy projects more than doubled. Then only 2,200 projects received support from the sustainable energy stimulation regulation SDE+. In the first half of last year, it was only 986 projects.
Put environmental goals down in the law, reduce gas extraction in Groningen to almost zero, implement a road tax based on kilometers and emissions, ban the sale of fossil-fueled vehicles after 2025 and close all the coal plants in the Netherlands, the environmental committees of six political parties write in a proposal for the climate portion of the governance agreement, the Volkskrant reports.
Ninety Dutch professors called on the new government to invest 200 billion euros into sustainability in the coming decades, in an open letter published in Trouw on Monday. With this money the Netherlands can build new, smart infrastructure for green energy, sustainable water supply and climate-conscious mobility, according to the professors.
The energy-intensive industries in the Netherlands managed at the last minute to prevent Minister Henk Kamp of Economic Affairs implementing a law on energy saving by coming up with their own energy saving goals and measures to reach them, NOS reports.
The Port of Rotterdam is taking its first steps in going green. On Thursday Allard Castelein, CEO of the Port, is meeting with almost everyone involved in the port on the ss Rotterdam to present two ambitious options for the port's energy transition, NRC reports.
GroenLinks youth movement Dwars is warning party leader Jesse Klaver not to jump into a coalition too quickly. If GroenLinks has to compromise too much on its goals, it may be better not to be part of the government, Dwars chairman Noortje Blokhuis said to BNR.
The fact that the first coalition formation being examined is "very exciting", Blohuis said. "The first question on the table is if we should even do it. It depends entirely on whom GroenLinks can govern with and what the parties are willing to compromise on for us."
The four largest cities in the Netherlands, united under G4, want the Dutch government to invest 35 billion euros into sustainability and infrastructure in the Randstad. The G4's plans span 15 years in which time some 1 million "green" homes will be built and accessibility to the city regions will be greatly improved, Het Parool reports.
The Mayors of Rotterdam, Amsterdam, The Hague and Utrecht met with Prime Minister Mark Rutte a few weeks ago to present their plan, Rotterdam mayor Ahmed Aboutaleb confirmed to the newspaper.
Even though Dutch people like to grumble when things do not go their way, the population is generally pretty satisfied about the country, according to a study I&O Research did on behalf of newspaper AD. The survey among more than 6 thousand Dutch found that while there are concerns about contradictions in society, most are positive about the Netherlands' future, AD reports.
Eating less meat and drinking less alcohol and soft drinks will not only benefit Dutch people's health, but also the environment, the national institute for public health and environment RIVM said in a report on Tuesday, the Volkskrant reports.
The best way to deal with Dutch coal-fire power plants is not closing them, but making them more sustainable, according to a yet to be published study by Frontier Economics, which the Financieele Dagblad got its hands on.
According to the study, the CO2 emissions from the coal plants can be stored in old gas fields. And biomass can be burned in the plants. That solution is relatively cheap and saves a lot on greenhouse gasses.
The government wants the Netherlands to be nearly CO2 emissions free by 2050, according to Economic Minister Henk Kamp's Energy Agenda. The Agenda contains a number of measures to reduce dependency on fossil fuels and encourage sustainable living. Environmental organizations call the plan unambitious, NU.nl reports.
The paper used for the last week presented "Green Bibles", turned out to not be as green as promised. These bibles, which were meant to be a source of inspiration for sustainable living, are made of normal paper, not recycled bibles, NOS reports.
The publisher of the Green Bibles, Royal Jongbloed, announced in a statement that fraud was committed with the paper used in the bibles and that an employee was suspended for it. How or why this fraud was committed is unclear. The publisher is not available for comment.
While the Netherlands is working hard to meet the United Nations targets for a fairer and sustainable world, other European countries are doing relatively better when it comes to clean energy and combatting climate change, according to a report Statistics Netherlands released on Friday.