The corona crisis shocked the globe, bringing many sectors to a standstill. At the same time, the energy transition is moving ahead at full speed. As a distribution network operator, we ensure that the vital energy infrastructure remains up and running. In 2020, more than half a million customers fed renewable energy back into our grid. The Executive Board explains the impact this has had on Enexis Groep and what we are doing to connect renewable projects to the grid as fast as possible.
Over 120.000 new renewable energy connections were added in 2020; an unprecedented increase in one year. We are doing everything we can to connect renewable energy initiatives as quickly as possible. But the electricity grid cannot keep up with the growth everywhere. The production capacity of renewable energy generators increased in the past year by nearly 60%.
We advocate for more efficient use of the electricity grid. This saves costs, space and time, and increases the feasibility of the Regional Energy Strategies.
The corona crisis has had an impact on everyone in society. Also at Enexis. More than ever, new ways of collaborating were necessary to meet the challenges brought on by the corona outbreak. Three stakeholders describe how they dealt with those challenges during this exceptional year.
Our contribution to a better world
Through our work, we contribute day in, day out to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs). Our focus is on creating a sustainable, reliable and affordable energy supply and safe infrastructure. We help cities and municipalities increase their sustainability. These are core activities and an important part of our strategy. In addition, we support issues that align positively with our work, for instance, quality education, economic growth and lowering our own footprint.
Are you curious to find out how we contribute to the challenges facing society?
In recent years, the energy transition has become increasingly visible across the Dutch landscape with wind turbines and solar farms. We are working towards a new strategy in 2021 to respond to the challenges of the future. A tall order, though, since we do not know exactly what the sustainable energy system will look like. How soon will residential neighbourhoods become natural gas free? What will be the industry's contribution where residual heat, hydrogen or renewable gases are concerned? It is difficult to make the right investment decisions now when so many uncertainties lie ahead.
In the new strategy, we take into account, for example, the changing customer demand and the increasing popularity of new energy sources in the built environment, such as hydrogen and heat. We also consider the rapid growth of electric transport and a rising demand for electricity in the industrial sector. In addition, we recognise the shortage of technical personnel in the labour market, as well as the innovation and opportunities that data and digitalisation offer.