Renewable energy

Survey characteristics

To obtain an overview of renewable energy in the Netherlands

Target population

All installations that produce renewable energy

Statistical unit


First year of survey



Annually. Wind energy also monthly.

Publication strategy

In February provisional figures on renewable electricity are published referring to the preceding year. In May provisional figures are published on total renewable energy. These provisional figures only refer to the main topics. In June revised provisional figures are published on all details. In December definite figures on the preceding year are published. All figures are published via StatLine. Some StatLine tables are also available in English. Newsworthy figures, in any case the provisional figures, are also published on the internet on the home page of Statistics Netherlands. Each year a report Renewable Energy in the Netherlands (CBS, 2015) is published (in Dutch only), containing an explanation of the main developments, comparisons with other European Countries and methodological notes.

How is the survey carried out?
Survey type

Renewable energy is used via various combinations of energy sources (e.g. wind and biomass) and techniques (e.g. wind turbines and wood stoves). The type of survey depends on the combination of source and technique. Where possible, administrative sources and/or information from other Statistics Netherlands surveys are used. Major examples are the administration of CertiQ’s certificates for Guarantees of Origin for green electricity and Statistics Netherlands’ survey of production, conversion and use of energy which is primarily used for the electricity and energy balance sheets. For solar energy, heat pumps and wood stoves with a capacity of more than 18 kW, the suppliers of the related renewable energy systems are approached. For some techniques key numbers are used to deduce target variables which are hard to monitor (e.g. renewable energy production by a large number of small installations) from variables which are more easily monitored (e.g. the capacity of installations). These key numbers are set in the Protocol Monitoring Renewable Energy ( and CBS, 2015, in Dutch only). Renewable Energy in the Netherlands describes the details of the survey method for each technology.

Survey method

Use of administrative sources and surveys (written, digital and telephone).


Administration operators and suppliers of renewable energy systems.

Sample size

All suppliers of renewable energy systems receive a questionnaire. Depending on the type of system in most cases a few dozen suppliers at the most are involved; concerning solar energy several hundreds of suppliers are involved.

Checking and correction methods

If possible, independent sources of information are used for purposes of reference: e.g. environmental reports for the government. Furthermore questionnaires are judged on internal consistency by checking the conversion efficiencies and by comparing them with previous years. In the case of unexpected developments that influence aggregated results, the data supplier is asked for confirmation. At the aggregate level,  and professional organisations are consulted, especially if large inaccuracies are suspected.


Renewable energy statistics are based on complete administrative sources and census surveys of small populations.  Non-response is corrected by imputation using information from preceding years or data on value added tax.

How accurate are the results?

The level of accuracy depends on the technique.  In Renewable Energy in the Netherlands the accuracy is quantified for each technology.

Sequential comparability

The method has been changed several times since the start of the survey.  However, breaks in time series are corrected as far as possible. Therefore, the figures from 1990 onwards are sequentially comparable.

Quality strategy

See section on checking and correction methods