Thriving sales of Dutch green power

A status report of utility sales of green electricity in the Netherlands and who heads the league table. The article also reports the price differential between grey and green power, as well as legislation that looks likely to boost sales of green electricity in the country.

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The PNEM/MEGA Group now heads the league table for utility sales of green electricity in the Netherlands. It has supplied over 110 million kWh to some 40,000 customers. Holland's green electricity schemes, first introduced by utility PNEM in 1995, are targeted at environmentally conscious consumers who elect to pay a small premium on the price of their electricity. The extra revenue reaped by utilities is being used to fund renewables development.

Following the exemption of green electricity from ecotax earlier this year, the price differential between grey and green power was brought down to some NLG 0.025/kWh. This difference is set to be further reduced by a proposed hike in ecotax.

In the medium term, sales of green electricity look likely to be further boosted by legislation which will oblige specified categories of consumer to buy 10% of their annual electricity requirements from renewable resources by 2020. The Dutch Energy Research Centre (ECN) in North Holland recently took an advance step to comply with this legislation by signing a 15 year contract with utility NUON to buy 375,000 kWh green power annually. Some 5% of the 10 million kWh ECN uses each year is currently generated by renewables. The NUON contract will increase that share to 9%.

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