What is wind energy?
Wind energy is electricity generated by a wind turbine or windmill. It is a clean form of energy with low CO2 emissions. How much electricity a wind turbine generates (in Dutch) depends on the:
- height of the turbine
- size of the rotor blades (the mill blades)
- wind speed
Most wind energy is generated in wind farms. You can invest in wind farms alone or together with others. It might also be possible to place one or more wind turbines at your business premises.
Wind turbine on your business premises
Do you want to place a windmill or turbine on your business premises? For example, a turbine of 10 to 30 metres can easily generate 30,000 kWh of electricity per year. There are also mini wind turbines, which you can place on the roof of your company building, for example. But that means you will not earn back your investment as quickly. The environmental benefit is also less.
Use, store, or return power
You can use the electricity you generate with your wind turbine yourself and/or store it in a battery. You can also choose to supply the generated electricity to your energy supplier. They will then offset this against the energy you use. To supply energy you must register your wind turbine with your grid operator on Energieleveren.nl (in Dutch). Are you supplying more energy than you use? Then your supplier pays you a fee for the surplus. This is called the netting arrangement (salderingsregeling). This scheme only applies if you have a small consumer connection of a maximum of 3x80 amps. The scheme will run until 2023, after which it will be gradually phased out. Read more about netting and returning (in Dutch) on the website of the Netherlands Authority for Consumers & Markets.
Ask your network operator about the transmission capacity
To supply back electricity, the power grid must have sufficient capacity. This is also known as transmission capacity. Sometimes that capacity is not enough. Ask your network operator in advance what your options are. You will find your network operator in the EAN code book (in Dutch).
Environmental management permit or notification
To place one or more wind turbines on your business premises, you sometimes need a permit or you have to file an environmental management report (melding milieubeheer). Ask your municipality what the rules and conditions are.
Investing in a wind farm
If you want to invest in wind energy on a larger scale, you could consider setting up a wind farm. You can place larger wind turbines in it, which generate much more energy. You can develop a wind farm yourself. Or together with other companies, citizens, and/or landowners. For example in an energy cooperative (in Dutch).
Steps for the development of a wind farm
The process of building a wind farm takes time and requires research. You take the following steps:
Rules for wind turbines and wind farms
Wind turbines and wind farms can cause nuisance to nature and local residents. That is why rules apply to wind turbines and wind farms. These may differ per municipality. The rules include:
- nature, landscape, and plant and animal species (in Dutch)
- safety for the environment of wind turbines (in Dutch)
- cast shadow of wind turbines (in Dutch)
- lighting of wind turbines (in Dutch)
- disturbance of radar stations due to wind turbines (in Dutch)
- limiting the height of wind turbines because of air traffic (in Dutch)
- noise from wind turbines (in Dutch)
Subsidies for wind turbines and wind farms
Various subsidies are available for buying or using (operating) wind turbines. You can also borrow money at a lower interest rate.