The fact that energy is always there for us, is nice and reassuring. Even in fast-changing times, we want to continue to deliver this assurance to everyone. Together, we will take the leap to the energy of tomorrow. Safe, reliable and sustainable.
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Enexis total emissions in tons of CO2
At the global and local levels, the energy management of the future is on the agenda. That is why we strive to develop the best solutions in every area we work. It is important that we remain flexible in the energy choices we make while also keeping costs under control. Doing so ensures that energy remains affordable for all customers.
Every day, consumers, businesses and municipalities, depend on our services. They also confront new energy issues, such as saving energy. Our main goal is to add value to all of our stakeholders, and to support and move them forward with our networks, knowledge and activities.
Wonder how our stakeholders see today’s energy challenges?
Jolanda and Rutger regularly come across each other during joint projects. Both of them are faced with the single greatest problem within the sector: the lack of technical personnel. A large proportion of technicians will retire in the near future and there are not enough young people with a technical background to take their place.
Jolanda: “The amount of work is increasing, but there’s no-one available to do it. So, you have to come up with creative solutions. The sector, as a whole, needs to innovate more. At BAM, for example, I want to start a pilot where one man does the hands-on work while an older, more experienced employee, for whom it is too physically hard to work outside, watches using 3D glasses. This is the sort of innovation that our sector needs.”
Rutger: “We’ve hit a brick wall. Ideas that were unthinkable in the past, are now being implemented. A scheme that works the best for us is one where you can earn 1,000 euros byintroducing a new colleague. Nobody suggests an unmotivated candidate, as they know that person could end up working with one of their own colleagues.”
Jolanda: “We carried out a survey among employees to learn what is important to them in their work. And salary is not even in the top three. People want to feel listened to and valued. You achieve this by going out on-site, or by joining in the conversation during the coffee break. In this line of work, people need to be on the same wavelength.”
Rutger: “It’s all about safety. If a colleague tells you that he’s switched something off, you have to be able to trust him and know that the power really is off. I don’t know if it’s the same in your company, Jolanda, but it’s something I often hear: you’re taking on so many young people now, but it’s me that has to train them and go out on the road with them.”
Jolanda: “Sounds familiar. We have to realise that we’re asking a lot from our existing people.”
Bernard and his wife bought their house eleven years ago. They insulated the walls straight away, added extra insulation to the roof and had double glazing installed in the French doors.
Bernard: “Did we do it for the environment? If I’m really honest, I suppose it was really for our own comfort and to save us money.”
Han: “One of the things that happens when you want to become more sustainable,is that everyone wants free choice nowadays.But if you want a hybrid heat pump and your neighbour wants a heating network, then it’s virtually impossible.So that’s one discussion point: how much individual freedom do you have in a system that demands a certain degreeof collectivity?”
Bernard: “I would be willing to discuss this sort of thing with my neighbours, but I wouldn’t want to coordinate it. I sometimes think: the government wants us all to become more sustainable. Come and give me some advice, then.Help me. And I would rather you advised me than someone from a commercial organisation that has to reach its targets and earn commission.”
Han: “What we do is to actively enter into discussions with municipalities and provinces and to tell them what is and isn’t realistic. It’s all very nice to announce that a neighbourhood built in the 1930s has to become all- electric within a few years, but that just isn’t achievable, not for the residents who have to modify their houses, nor for the organisations responsible for the infrastructure.”
Bernard: “’We’re really spoilt here in the Netherlands. If we plug something in, we expect the power to work.” It’s quite another story in France.”
Han: “You’re right. People have gotten used to that, and that’s fine. The challenge is to maintain that high level of reliability as we increase sustainability.”
Donald and Marlous have both taken the train to Amsterdam and are walking around the Hortus Botanicus botanical gardens.
Donald: “Companies can’t force people to leave their cars at home, but you can take steps to encourage it. For instance, by giving everyone the same mileage allowance. If you come by bike, you can make more money. And quite rightly too, because you’re reducing your environmental impact.”
Marlous: “We’re also aiming for 50% less CO2 emissions from our business trips by 2030. Mobility is a relatively small part of our footprint, but this way of thinking and acting is vital to the overall energy transition and it’s what CSR is all about.”
Donald: “I’m convinced that the energy transition can only succeed if there’s widespread commitment from society as a whole, and Enexis should also play a role. It all comes down to how you influence consumers, suppliers, the energy sector and politicians.”
Marlous: “This collaboration is crucial, and I can see its role only increasing. For example, we’re actively contributing to the provincial and municipal energy plans, and working together with residents in the Buurtkracht energy saving programme.”
Donald: “What I’m curious about, is whether you can quantify the CSR policy and link it to incentive payments. It’s a way of showing that you’re serious. You can’t make that happen on your own, of course, but that’s my message to the CEO.”
Marlous: “We’ve had a CSR policy for around five years now and we’ve seen that quantification can help us take the next step. Small solutions can sometimes make a world of difference.”
Mariëlle Vogt, Finance Director, Enexis Groep recently calculated that if she charges her electric car for three hours in the evening, it uses the same amount of energy as her family does in a whole day and places five times the load on the grid. “Actually, it’s not fair that people who don’t have an electric car pay the same amount for their grid use as people like me. And electric vehicle drivers are often already those in a better financial position. That’s why at Enexis we want a change to fairer rates. Perhaps in the same way data bundles work on mobile phones - you buy a certain amount and if you place higher demands on the network, you pay more. Where do you stand on this?” Berend de Vries, Alderman for the Municipality of Tilburg, considers this as he’s walking. “It seems logical to me that a system like this is introduced, although it’s quite difficult to understand how it will work with feed-in from solar panels, for instance. Citizens do need to be certain of what they can earn from their solar panels, otherwise they won’t put them on their roofs. The costs that homeowners need to pay to make their houses more sustainable also need to be flattened, so that increases in energy tax don’t have a disproportionate effect on the least affluent income groups.”
Mariëlle: “I’d be happy if having a warm house became almost a sort of right. What if, in principle everyone paid the same, regardless of the energy source they used? Because, in a manner of speaking, you’re in luck if you live in a new residential area that’s easy to renovate and it’s just tough if you live in an old house that isn’t so easy to disconnect from the natural gas grid.”
Berend: “I agree that everyone has a right to a warm house. But I also believe in incentives in the system that encourage people to make sustainable choices. So, I understand that a differentiation is made between heating, electricity and gas. But if the balance becomes too uneven, then you have to introduce so many compensatory measures for specific groups that the system becomes extremely complicated.
In 2009, the grid operator Enexis split off from the energy supplier Essent. Cor Brockhoven points out that the energy transition demands collaboration.
Cor: “We see that over the last two or three years, the energy transition has gained so much momentum that it raises new questions on an almost weekly basis. Take, for example, the voltage drops in the north of the country when the grid was unable to cope with the enormous increase in solar panels. We had to find solutions quickly. The provisions for such cases that are laid down in laws and regulations are fine in principle, but they will need updating later, based on practical experience.”
Patrick: “The Netherlands is really just one big gearbox. Moving one cog has an immediate effect somewhere else. We have come up with a plan to replace asbestos roofs in the countryside with solar panels. In order to connect them, we need to contact the grid operators. We are not legally allowed to do anything to the grid. But perhaps we will be allowed to if the grid operators are in charge?”
Cor: “This is typically one of those questions arising from the phase of the energy transition that we’re currently in. It’s a good example. I don’t know, if this is legally possible.”
Patrick: “We ought to look into it. But then there has to be the will to find out. So that a grid operator doesn’t automatically say: join the queue; we’ll get to you in 18 months’ time. That doesn’t happen at Enexis. You do want to talk about how we can help each other within the existing regulations. Maybe that’s because we used to be part of the same family.”
Cor: “Collaboration is crucial for progress. There’s no blueprint for the energy transition. We have to come up with one together.”
Our value creation model shows how we use our networks, employees and finances to achieve short-term goals and how we aim to be of social value in the long term. Our strategy is the most important way we add value to all of our stakeholders. It determines how we work and what choices we make.
Together with our stakeholders, we continue to develop solutions to make the energy supply more sustainable. We have four main priorities for 2019: safe working, customer-driven work, improvement projects for the customer, and accelerating the energy transition. In 2019, we will also do our utmost to support regional authorities in drafting their Regional Energy Strategies. Together, we shape the energy of tomorrow.