Separating fact from fiction

Thursday November 28, 2013 11:35

Recently, a Dutch report titled Energietrends 2013 was published, which has been written by ECN, together with the branch organisations Energie-Nederland and Netbeheer Nederland. With this annual report, the partners aim to provide a factual basis for the discussion on energy supply in the Netherlands. The report deals with four trends: changing market conditions for electricity, consequences of a changing energy market for consumers, necessary adaptations of power grids,growing labour market for sustainable energy. Below, each of the partners gives their vision on the collaboration.

Marcel Halma, until recently Director of Public Affairs at Netbeheer Nederland:

‘Together with Energie-Nederland, we have been publishing trend analyses for the past 15 years. A few years ago, the idea was born to involve ECN in these analyses as a kind of objectivising data checker. As a branch organisation, one tends to emphasize one’s own points. A knowledge institute looks through scientific glasses, thus ensuring a balance. It gives us a stronger appearance. We are now able to offer an objective, overarching view: separating facts from fiction as a contribution to a frequently emotional discussion.’

André Jurjus, director Energie-Nederland

‘The debate about our energy system is going in all directions. Many interests are involved and numerous voices are being heard, some of which lack substantial knowledge. We are also a stakeholder, but we represent many different members, ranging from large and small parties to grey and green energy suppliers. Therefore we need to position ourselves above the parties. Our main interest is simply to ensure that the energy chain continues to function properly in the future. ECN possesses a great deal of expertise in this area. It is able to validate that we are looking at the right trends. With our joint analysis, we want to offer the Dutch reference report in the field of energy. And we are successful; I have seen our report lying on many different tables.’

Joost Gerdes, project leader ECN

‘To us, the collaboration with Energie-Nederland and Netbeheer Nederland is interesting, because it enables us to hear directly what the current themes are in the energy branch. We too want to see that the problems that really need to be addressed to enable a sustainable energy system, are put on the agenda. At ECN we are able to increase the efficiency of solar cells and we can help develop policy to make their deployment more appealing. But if the electricity that is generated this way cannot be fed into the electricity grid, all of this will not be meaningful. We are therefore happy to collaborate on these reports. We also use the results to steer the direction of our own ECN research. From the trend analyses, we can learn where we can truly make a difference.'

The partners that edited the Energy Trends report. Left Martijn Boelhouwer, replacing Marcel Halma on behalf of Netbeheer Nederland. Centre Andre Jurjus of Energy-Nederland, right Joost Gerdes of ECN.
(Photo Robert Goddyn)

Category: November, Policy Studies