in: NRC Handelsblad 26.03.2014
Last year the Dutch government, together with civil society organisations, labour unions and employer organisations, formulated the 'energieakkoord' - a long-term energy and climate policy for the Netherlands. The policy includes plans to raise renewable energy production from 4% to 14% in 2020, largely through wind energy. As plans are being rolled out, there is increasing resistance in communities where wind turbines are envisaged.
The op-ed stresses the importance of the bigger picture to reduce the resistance. The Netherlands is not just lagging behind in its renewable energy production, the discussion also almost seems to be stuck on the aesthetics of wind turbines. The Dutch government should focus on the broader picture - necessity, taking responsibility, and economic and societal progress. Wind energy has a crucial role in preventing dangerous climate change and in making energy provision more independent from oil-regimes. The potential is huge: offshore Europe alone receives enough wind energy to cover European energy needs seven times over. The government should inform people better, and has to translate peoples' environmental consciousness in acceptation, through peoples' participation and benefit-sharing.
For an English summary, see