Energy intensities of buildings of the services sector

What does the survey comprise?


Providing insight in the average gas and electricity consumption of buildings in the services sector. Energy efficiency indicators are needed to monitor energy efficiency policies. Energy intensities per square meter floor area are used as energy efficiency indicators. Gas intensities are corrected for temperature. Energy intensities only apply to company locations that are in use and for which energy intensities fall within minimum and maximum boundaries.

Target population

Buildings of the services sector. The services sector comprises companies for which the main economic activity is classifies in the branches G-U according to Standard Industrial Classification 2008. Different types of buildings are in use by the services sector. Buildings have been categorized in different building types In cooperation with Energieonderzoek Centrum Nederland (ECN), the Economisch Instituut voor de Bouw (EIB) and Rijksdienst voor Ondernemend Nederland.

Statistical unit

Company locations of the services sector. A company location exists of one or more addresses belonging to the company. Some companies have several company locations, for instance a supermarket chain with supermarkets across the Netherlands. Company locations are categorized by type of building.

Date/year survey started



Energy intensities do not change very quickly over time. Though gas intensities have been corrected for temperature, it is not possible to completely remove all temperature effects on gas intensities To limit the effect of temperature on gas intensities, the energy intensities have been published for the year 2012. The year 2012 was an average year when looking to temperature.

Publication strategy

Figures are definite.

How is the survey conducted?

Survey type

The clients register of energy distribution companies are the source. These register contain all connections of electricity and natural gas of the national grid. To identify energy deliveries for the services sector, the client registers are matched with the address registers ‘Basis Administratie Gebouwen’ and ‘Dataland’ and registers with information about economic activities (Locatus and ABR). The address registers contain information about floor area and building type for all buildings in the Netherlands. With this information company locations are identified, categorized into types of building and energy intensities are estimated. For some building types the average energy intensities have been published.

Survey method

  • Client registers: Data are received from the energy distribution companies that transport energy through the national grid. All connections in the Netherlands are included in the clients register.
  • BAG: Data about addresses and buildings are delivered electronically by Kadaster.
  • ABR: The company register used several registers from the Chamber of Commerce, Tax offices, UWV and the Dutch Central Bank to define the population of companies in the Netherlands. From 2014 onwards only the register NHR is used to define companies.
  • Locatus: Branche data are received from Locatus. Locatus collects data from all shops in the Netherlands.
  • Dataland: from Dataland data are received about the building type of buildings. Dataland collects data from registers of municipalities and other government agencies.


  • Client registers: The electricity and natural gas distribution companies: TenneT as the national electricity distribution company, Gas Transport Services (GTS) as the national natural gas distribution company, the grid of Zebragas, and all regional distribution companies of electricity and natural gas.
  • BAG and Dataland: Municipalities.
  • Locatus: shops.

Sample size

  • Client registers: All electricity and natural gas connections to the Dutch national grid are included.
  • BAG and Dataland: all buildings in the Netherlands.
  • ABR: all companies in the Netherlands.
  • Locatus: all shops in the Netherlands.

Checking and correction methods

  • The clients register from the network companies are each checked for completeness by comparing the total of the supplies with the total in the electricity balance and natural gas balance of each network company.
  • The supplies of electricity and natural gas from all distribution companies together is compared to the total amount of electricity and natural gas distributed through the national grid. The total amount distributed through the national grid is included in the statistics on the national energy balance (a product of Statistics Netherlands) and are based on questionnaires sent to companies responsible for production, imports and exports of electricity and natural gas.
  • For some types of buildings a comparison could be made with other sources regarding total floor area.
  • Minimums and maximums are applied to energy intensities to exclude company locations for which deliveries or floor area could not (completely) be identified. The ranges were defined based on literature reviews and 5th and 95th percentiles. Gas intensities for company locations with city heating are likely excluded. For each building type a minimum floor area has also been defined.
  • Average energy intensities have only been published when at least 70% of the identified energy deliveries for the specific building type passed the validation checks.


Not applicable.

Quality of the results


Figures are reported in kWh/m2 (electricity) and m3/m2 (natural gas).
The effect of the boundaries for which energy intensities are classified as valid have been tested by estimating the average intensities with 20% more or less stringent boundaries for the years 2012-2014. For most of the published types of buildings the effect was less than 1 m3/m2 (5 kWh/m2) or less than 5%. This validation rule has a limited effect on the estimated energy intensities.
Confidence intervals have been calculated for the average intensities. Confidence intervals increase with increasing floor area class as the width of floor area classes increase and with increasing floor area it becomes more difficult to identify company locations. The confidence intervals are however relatively small (+- <0,5 m3/m2 or +-0,5 kWh/2).

Quality strategy

See section on checking and correction methods.