Community energy: it's coming up roses!

Tineke van der Schoor, Bert Scholtens

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    Far from being negligible in quantity, decentralized energy production delivers a considerable part of the renewable energy production in the Netherlands. Decentralized production takes place by individual households, companies as well as citizen groups. Grassroots initiatives have sprung up in the Netherlands in the last 5 years, in a recent inventory 313 formally instituted local energy cooperatives were found. Cooperatives’ aims are sustainability, strengthening local economy and promoting a democratic governance structure for energy production.
    The energy industry in the Netherlands has traditionally been dominated by large energy companies, and the Groningen gas field has resulted in a very high dependency on natural gas for both consumer and business households. The climate for grassroots initiatives has improved since the so-called Energy Covenant in 2013. This covenant pertains to an agreement between government, industry representatives, labor unions and non-governmental organizations to arrive at a substantial reduction of energy use, ambitious increase in the production of renewable energy, and new jobs in the renewable energy sector.
    The covenant also announced new policies to stimulate community energy activities, such as the Zip-code-rose policy . The governmental interest in new forms of energy transition, is also demonstrated by the ‘Experiments Electricity Law’ facility, which gives local business and community initiatives an opportunity to experiment with a local energy system. This policy is meant as a ‘learning facility’; experiences are expected to lead to adaptations in Dutch electricity law and regulation.
    Original languageEnglish
    Number of pages9
    Publication statusIn preparation - 21 Dec 2017
    EventNIG Annual Work Conference - Maastricht, Netherlands
    Duration: 9 Nov 201710 Nov 2017


    ConferenceNIG Annual Work Conference
    Internet address


    • community energy
    • cooperatives
    • energy transition
    • Zip code rose instrument


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