Electricity production in the Netherlands topped 100 billion kWh for the first time in 2004. Production was 4 percent up on 2003, and rose to 102 billion kWh. Electricity production has continually been higher than the previous year since 1999. The increase was realised by central production units. Since 1999 electricity production has increased by more than one quarter in these units. Decentral production hardly changed on balance in this period.
CHP capacity increasing
In 2004 91 percent of electricity generated in the Netherlands was produced by the combustion of fossil fuels. The heat remaining from this process can be used for electricity generation by combined heat and power (CHP) applications. The resulting higher yield of these fuels curbs the emission of pollutants, such as greenhouse gas CO2. CHP has thus contributed importantly to the realisation of the targets formulated in the Kyoto protocol.
The total capacity of CHP plants in the Netherlands rose by 0.9 GW to more than 10 GW, mainly through the expansion of existing central production units. Central CHP capacity was larger than the decentral capacity, which rose by less than 0.1 GW. By comparison, at the end of 2004 the total capacity of electricity producers in the Netherlands was 21.5 GW.
CHP electricity and heat production
Central CHP production up
More than 4099 petajoule (PJ) of electricity and heat was produced by CHP plants in 2004. Nearly two-thirds of this was produced by decentral units. Net heat and electricity production by decentral units has hardly changed since 1998. Central production on the other hand rose particularly strongly in 2004 (+ 26 PJ), mainly because new CHP plants became operational in this year.
Jan Kloots and Bart van Wezel