Site:WEC 2016 Annual Summit >> Expert Advice
Mark van den Boogaard, Deputy Head of Economic Department of the Embassy of the Kingdom of The Netherlands

In the farewell address, President Obama mentioned that we have to take the challenge of climate change, and to simply deny the problem not only betrays future generations, it betrays the essential spirit of this country, the essential spirit of innovation and practical problem-solving that guided founders of America. 

As for Dutch energy transition to sustainable energy, Netherlands is very modern, rich and advanced in technology, and is often regarded very clean by other countries. Actually a reality was that 95% of the energy supply in Netherlands relied on fossil fuels 3 years ago.  

But now, with an active sustainable energy policy, depth knowledge and advanced technology and experiences, Netherlands owns the cheapest offshore wind in the world.

In 2013, Dutch whole society reached an energy agreement negotiated between the industry as well as non-governmental organizations and government to further promote the development of sustainable energy which put forward to save 1.5% final energy consumption in total, and to increase the proportion of renewable energy to 16% before 2030. And the government also made some long-term goals. In a policy document on transition to renewable energy released last year, Dutch government enacted a further goal, which was to reduce the CO2 and greenhouse gas emissions by 80% to 95% before year2050.

In order to further achieve the transition to renewable energy, we have to find the main functional energy and find a series of solutions. We have to focus on the use revolution of energy in heating industry, industrial heating industry and the electric lighting.

We are now very focus on CO2 emissions in Netherlands. It is very difficult to increase GDP in Netherlands now, but the government owns clear objectives of CO2 emission reduction, which brings economic opportunity to Dutch enterprises. Many companies make the advantage of the government’s policy on energy transition towards renewable and sustainable energy, which makes the government to focus on the comparative advantage and put energy into the policy of overall planning. Enterprises have to produce energy close to the customers, and local governments have to put the energy strategy into the overall urban planning.

We should pay attention to the cost saving, only producing energy when it is needed. About coal, if we need coal to for heating or generating electricity, we must avoid it from polluting the environment.

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