The Netherlands trails most EU nations in meeting green energy targets
The Netherlands is one of the slowest countries in Europe to make progress towards sustainable energy targets, according to a new European Commission report.
Green energy accounted for just 4.5 percent of Dutch energy usage in 2012 and only Britain, France and Malta have a worse record, the report shows.
The Dutch target of 14 percent is also one of the least ambitious in Europe.
Three countries have already reached their 2020 targets: Estonia (25 percent), Sweden (49 percent) and Bulgaria (16 percent).
Last July, Dutch ministers, unions, employers and environmental groups reached a long-awaited agreement on a package of measures to save energy and cut CO2 emissions.
The deal involves closing down old coal-fired power stations earlier than scheduled, the setting up of a special fund to pay for energy efficiency measures – with cash from pension funds – and a major focus on offshore wind energy generation.