February 6, 2023

Taylor Daily Press

Complete News World

There is an uproar in the Netherlands about a benefit amendment for solar panel owners

Subject image © ANP / Hollandse Hoogte / Barton van Flymen.

In the Netherlands, there has been a lot of discussion about the financial benefits for people using solar panels. Energy Secretary Rob Gettin wants to scrap the current net metering and feed offset scheme, but his proposal still faces a lot of criticism. Do you have one too? deja vu?

Jill Lisenberg

The Dutch political debate reminds us of the “counter-turn” saga in our country two years ago. At the time, the system ensured that solar panel owners who generate more power than they consume see their meter nearly reversed, so they have to pay much less. The reversal scheme, after months of discussion, was officially overturned by the Constitutional Court in January 2021.

In the Netherlands they now appear to be facing a similar point of contention. There is currently a system that can be compared to a reversing counter system. Those who generate electricity via solar panels, but do not use it themselves, return it to the power grid. To compensate, they can deduct this amount of electricity from what they buy themselves from the grid. This is called salting. If you supply more electricity on an annual basis than you use yourself, you will receive the excess back in the form of feed-in charges.

Dutch Energy Minister Rob Gettin. © Reuters

It makes installing solar panels attractive from a financial point of view. Even a little too attractive, according to the Dutch government. Energy Secretary Rob Gettin (D66) wants to phase out the current net metering scheme from 2025. They’ve backed up their plan with calculations from a research agency that states the current scheme will eventually lead to “overstimulus”.

breach of contract

But many opposition parties and consumer organizations disagree. “This is a form of breach of contract,” said Rinsky Lejten of the Socialist Party SP. “All the risks of the energy resource will soon be passed on to the consumer. People are encouraged to invest in sustainable energy. Once these investments are made, they are not allowed to reap the benefits.”

Judging by how the discussion has gone in Belgium, it is expected that the last word has not yet been said on this matter.

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