Annual Report 2016
Country Reports


Jos Reijnders RVO - Netherlands Enterprise Agency


The Netherlands does not have a national strategy for ocean energy and nor are there specific targets. The ocean energy strategy is part of the national target of 16% renewables in 2023.

The marine spatial planning is focused on offshore wind, special areas have been appointed for offshore wind (3500 MW). There are no offshore ocean energy projects planned yet.

A spatial analysis of the potential of the North Sea with a view to 2050 has been made, with regard to offshore wind and ocean energy.

The North Sea Spatial Agenda indicates a potential of up to 2000 MW of tidal current and wave energy to be possible, if techniques are developed further to fit the Dutch situation, with relatively low tidal heads and speeds. Although in some cases there is fast flowing water of estuaries, and near barriers there are places with high speeds up to 5 m/sec.

For 2017, the generic national subsidy scheme (SDE, stimulating renewable energy) has also been open for tidal current, wave energy and free flow energy. The maximum subsidy for renewables has been reduced to €0,13/kWh, due to the decreased costs of offshore wind, which is considered as the benchmark.

Although there is a central permitting system, in practise, consenting requires engagement with a wide range of permitting bodies such as central government, province, municipality, Rijkswaterstaat, local harbour authorities, ministry of defence and the regional water board.

The Netherlands’ Department of Waterways and Public Works (Rijkswaterstaat) supports initiatives to generate energy, but, on the other hand, is responsible for protecting the Netherlands from flooding from the North Sea. In general, the current projects have been supported generously and erected quickly.

There are no specific market incentives for ocean energy or other renewable energies. The generic DEI (Demonstration of Energy innovations) subsidy scheme supports projects with a focus on export of Dutch technology. In 2016, a few new ocean energy projects have been rewarded.

Since the 1990s, the Ministry of Economic Affairs has initiated a number of grants via generic R&D instruments; these are also available for ocean energy research.

Many projects have been supported in National funding programmes; Archimedes Wave Swing (for wave (swell) energy), Tocardo Tidal turbines, REDstack (salinity with reverse electro dialyses), BlueWater (tidal), BlueRise (OTEC), Teamwork Technology (tidal, wave) and many R&D Institutions, like ECN, NIOZ, Wetsus, Imares, Deltares, Marin, TNO and the Universities.

At the moment, two projects have been granted within the DEI (Demonstration of Energy innovations) subsidy scheme; BlueTec and Tocardo-Huisman.