Knowledge Platforms

IEA report: “Empowering Cities for a Net Zero Future”

IEA report: “Empowering Cities for a Net Zero Future”

In this IEA report, it’s mentioned that cities account for more than 50% of the global population, 80% of global GDP, two-thirds of global energy consumption and more than 70% of annual global carbon emissions. According to IEA, these factors are expected to grow significantly in the coming decades: it is anticipated that by 2050 more than 70% of the world’s population will live in cities, resulting in massive growth in demand for urban energy infrastructure. Read more by clicking here ……

Are electric cars just as safe as fuel-powered cars? And what are the safety aspects in closed spaces?

Are electric cars just as safe as fuel-powered cars? And what are the safety aspects in closed spaces?

Consultancy firm CE Delft concludes that electric cars are just as safe as cars which run on fuel.

Commissioned by the Netherlands Enterprise Agency (“RVO”) and on behalf of the “Nationale Agenda Laadinfrastructuur (NAL)” (freely translated: National Agenda for Charging Infrastructure), CE Delft conducted a study. Read more ……

The safety of cars in closed spaces (parking garages) has also been examined. Parking garages in the Netherlands must comply with the 2012 Building Decree (Rijksoverheid, 2011). However, the safety conclusions are not yet clear when referring to the mentioned report. More information is expected in 2021. We keep a close eye on further developments. (information portal on heat pumps) (information portal on heat pumps)

The consultancy firm BDH has entered into a partnership with EnShared in 2020. EnShared has taken over the Information portal Heat Pumps ( from BDH.

This online portal is the place for consumers to obtain information about heat pumps in homes. Thanks to this cooperation, both organisations can contribute even better to make existing and new homes more sustainable.

In addition to the independent solar energy platform Zonatlas, EnShared is happy to help more home owners, via, with their complex sustainability issues.


If you have any questions, please contact EnShared directly via email ( or telephone number +31-88-6441717.

External views through smart benchmarking, then local action and also international cooperation

External views through smart benchmarking, then local action and also international cooperation

We must understand developments globally to become stronger locally.

Two particular references I would like to mention in this context. The conclusions, which one can draw from these statistics and overviews, are straightforward and I leave this up to the individual reader.


IEA: Energy Technology RD&D Budgets 2020

I can really recommend the reader to look at IEA’s Energy Technology RD&D Budgets 2020.

These overviews include data on budgets in specific IEA member countries and the database shows RD&D budgets and various indicators. One ought to be cautious when interpreting the absolute figures. Nevertheless, it shows the money being spent on national level and in which areas.

With compliments to the IEA who states on their website: “The complete IEA Energy Technology RD&D Budget Database can be accessed for free through IEA Data Services by logging in as GUEST. Please see the documentation, manual, or questionnaire for additional information.”.

For more information on this wealth of information provided by IEA, please click here.


Share of renewable energy in EU member states (source: Eurostat Statistics)

The “Eurostat Statistics Explained” provide useful and clear insights.

For instance, the Renewable energy statistics give the following results:

  • Share of renewable energy nearly doubled between 2004 and 2018.
  • In 2018, renewable energy represented 18.9% of energy consumed in the EU, compared with 9.6% in 2004 – the 2020 target is 20%.
  • The share of energy from renewable sources used in transport activities in the EU reached 8.3% in 2018.

If one views how the Netherlands is doing in all of this, the following results:

  • Netherlands takes last (27th) place in the graph presented by Eurostat on “Share of energy from renewable sources in the EU Member States (2018, in % of gross final energy consumption)” – click here.
  • A more positive picture for the Netherlands (4th place measured from the top) is viewed when studying the graph “Share of energy from renewable sources in transport (2018, in % of gross final energy consumption)” – click here.

As a Dutchman, but very much being the European and mostly the global citizen for ecological issues, I obviously want my country to do much better in what I’ve extracted from the Eurostat data. Hence, some of the key questions should be; why are the other countries doing ‘better’, and what’s hindering us from performing as requested? What can we learn from the top performers on our national, regional and local levels? These questions stimulate the international cooperation in large implementation projects. Where organisations from many countries with good diversity are participating. And once finished, we share the lessons learnt and best practices.

For more information on the Eurostat statistics, please click here.

The power of residential battery energy storage systems

The power of residential battery energy storage systems

The importance of applying significant focus on the actual implementation of energy storage as part of smart energy transition solutions.

A relevant quote from the report produced by SolarPower Europe ‘European Market Outlook For Residential Battery Storage 2020–2024’: “Last year, 745 MWh from 96,000 systems were installed, representing a 57% annual growth rate. The foundation for the European residential BESS sector was laid by a handful of countries, where a large residential solar market already, exists – namely Germany, Italy, UK, Austria, and Switzerland. These Top 5 markets absorbed over 90% of all BESS installations in 2019 and are also responsible for a similar level of the nearly 2 GWh of operating residential storage capacity in Europe so far.”. (Note: BESS stands for Battery Energy Storage Systems).

Please refer to the information accessible via the link by clicking here. The analyses and forecasts are a ‘must read’ for all working in the energy transition field.

The abovementioned report fully supports the developments and implementation success experienced elsewhere, by for example iwell; please refer to their website.

Another good example worth exploring, is the independent Dutch solar platform Zonatlas NL, freely accessible for individual households and individual business (e.g. SME). Zonatlas has for several regions in the Netherlands an on-line battery storage option available in case an individual household wants to make a connection with the energy generated by solar panels – please refer to the following website for more information:


The author of this blog as well as the Dutch companies EnShared and Zonatlas made a contribution to the Position paper ‘Virtual Energy Plants through Energy Commons’, which was recently issued by the independent foundation Future Energy Systems – please refer to: Energy storage prominently features in this Paper, as it is an essential component in creating virtual energy plants. And when, for example, sufficient storage capacity is connected to the micro-grid, self-balancing and the trading of stored electricity can also be exploited. These storage systems provide another important form of flexibility to the market and will gain greater public interest as the share of renewables increases.


IEA World Energy Outlook 2020 clearly states: “Solar becomes the new king of electricity…..”. This makes the role of storage more important for affordable and reliable energy systems in the near future.

For further information, please click here, but the following quotes from IEA’s WEO 2020 are worth mentioning here:

  • “Renewables grow rapidly in all our scenarios, with solar at the centre of this new constellation of electricity generation technologies. Supportive policies and maturing technologies are enabling very cheap access to capital in leading markets. With sharp cost reductions over the past decade, solar PV is consistently cheaper than new coal- or gas fired power plants in most countries, and solar projects now offer some of the lowest cost electricity ever seen.”.
  • “Storage plays an increasingly vital role in ensuring the flexible operation of power systems, with India becoming the largest market for utility-scale battery storage.”.


In the Netherlands many realise that the current and past tax and subsidy regime hasn’t really supported the large scale implementation of energy storage to date. Nevertheless, we observe good examples of implementation in for example apartment buildings where a smart battery system significantly lowers the peaks in the power supply resulting from the elevator usages.

It’ll be obvious that in the Netherlands we should focus more and more on the smart introduction of battery and energy storage systems.

We will continue to write about future developments.


Note (re.

A Virtual Energy Plant through an Energy Common is a network of local small- and medium scale power and heat generating units such as wind farms, solar parks, and Combined Heat and Power (CHP) units, as well as flexible energy consumers and storage systems. The interconnected units are dispatched through an automated central ‘control room’ of the Energy Common thereby remaining independent in their operation and ownership. The objective of a community based Virtual Power Plant is twofold. First, it needs to generate enough renewable energy for the local community. Secondly it should relieve the load on the electricity grid by smartly distributing the power generated by the individual units during periods of peak load. In case of a surplus, the combined power generation and power consumption of the networked units in the Virtual Energy Plant can be traded on the energy exchange.

Foundation Future Energy Systems

Foundation Future Energy Systems

The Foundation Future Energy Systems (hereinafter: FES) was established on August 14, 2020. FES aims to join forces within different sectors in the field of energy, area development and social innovation in order to contribute to a more inclusive, just and sustainable society. What motivates the foundation is collaboration and co-creation, learning from experiences, and allowing each other’s complementarity to work to the benefit of all. Decisiveness, with a strong support organisation. The core focus is supporting energy cooperatives and neighbourhoods and helping to set up energy commons. The aim of the Foundation is not to make a profit, and the ANBI status will be applied for. For more information, see:

The Energy Commons Institute (ECI) was established in October 2019. Due to advancing insights regarding the objectives and in view of the experiences of the past year, it was decided to rename the foundation and to discontinue the ECI foundation. This is in line with the ideas and activities of the social and sustainable innovations advocated by the initiators. This new foundation FES – like ECI – has an independent vision of technological developments that promote the energy transition. With today’s science and developments, a sharpened mission and new approach are in line with this. An example of the activities of the new foundation FES is the support of energy markets for the pooling of flexibility in which benefits flow back to households as much as possible. Another example is supporting the development of new technologies and software, based on Open Source principles, which are necessary to enable an affordable energy transition for households and companies. With this review, the new foundation fits in seamlessly with the recently presented vision of Europe: “Recovery and preparation for the next generation”;

“Virtual Energy Plants through Energy Commons”

“Virtual Energy Plants through Energy Commons”

Update following changes in 2nd half 2020.

We would like to refer to the website of the foundation Future Energy Systems that has published a Position Paper: “Virtual Energy Plants through Energy Commons”.

This Position Paper describes the Energy Common ideas. It is an important impulse to jointly set up Energy Commons and to develop technology for this in co-creation and to apply it intelligently. Read more ….

Knowledge Platform EMV provides answers to questions about electric and/or magnetic fields

Knowledge Platform EMV provides answers to questions about electric and/or magnetic fields

By making our home more sustainable and with the introduction of the electric car, we are introducing all kinds of new technologies into our lives. Thinking of for instance solar panels and associated inverters, heat pumps, electric cooking, use of apps to monitor energy consumption, the electric car with battery, charging points for electric cars, etc. When installing an Energy Management System (EMS), various devices in our home will communicate with each other via wireless connections.

These useful devices, aimed at a sustainable society, cause electric fields and/or magnetic fields. By the way, our TV, the computer and other electrical devices do that too. This can raise questions such as: how strong are these fields? Do the electromagnetic fields have potential negative health effects?

Fortunately, we have an independent Knowledge Platform in the Netherlands, the Knowledge Platform ElectroMagnetic Fields and Health (EMV), which provides clear answers and information to public questions or concerns. The Knowledge Platform EMV includes: RIVM, TNO, DNV GL, GGD GHOR Netherlands, Telecom Agency, ZonMw and Milieu Centraal. The Health Council of the Netherlands has an advisory function.

For information about the electrical appliances in our home and/or other subjects, please refer to:

For more general information; click here.

NKL: The Dutch National Agenda for Loading Infrastructure (NAL) is part of the Climate Agreement

NKL: The Dutch National Agenda for Loading Infrastructure (NAL) is part of the Climate Agreement

It states that by 2030 all new cars must be emission-free. This means that 1.9 million electric passenger vehicles will be on the road. To be able to load them, an estimated 1.7 million charging points are needed. In addition, strong growth is expected in electric transportation. The agreements laid down in the NAL must ensure that the loading requirements of all these vehicles can be met.
Read more …. (Dutch version only).