The Netherlands taps into its gas reserves as energy consumption rises
As a result of the recent change in weather, people in the Netherlands are using considerably more gas to heat their homes, with one energy company telling the AD that Dutch gas reserves are now being used.
The Netherlands working hard to reduce energy usage
A recent study conducted by research agency Ipsos found that people in the Netherlands had worked hard to successfully reduce their energy consumption during the autumn, cutting down on gas consumption in order to reduce their energy bills.
According to Ipsos, between September and the end of November, almost half of the population was cutting costs by lowering or turning off the heating in their homes, and 41 percent had reduced their energy consumption by taking shorter showers. Even as the outdoor temperatures started to fall, “the Dutch continued stubbornly” to cut gas consumption, Ipsos wrote at the time.
Cold weather means gas consumption rises by 30 percent
Just a few days later, however, it appears as though the situation has changed. With sub-zero temperatures as low as minus 10 recorded in the Netherlands this week, energy company Gasunie told the AD that gas consumption has increased significantly over the past several days.
Professor Martien Visser, who works as a strategy manager at Gasunie, said that on Monday and Tuesday of this week, households and businesses used a total of around 400 million cubic metres of gas. “That’s quite a lot,” he explained, adding that Gasunie’s total consumption was over 27 billion cubic metres until the end of November, “so these are considerable quantities.”
Dutch gas reserves fallen by more than 10 percent since October
A spokesperson for the company added that gas consumption has been 30 percent higher since the beginning of this month, which has resulted in significant consequences for Gasunie’s gas reserves in Groningen and Rotterdam; the Netherlands has had to tap into its reserves this week, and while storage facilities were 93 percent full in mid-October, the volume has since fallen by over 10 percent.
But, speaking to the NOS Radio 1 Journaal, Visser said there wasn’t any real cause for concern yet, explaining that there are enough supplies to get the Netherlands through “a long harsh winter.” A spokesperson for Eneco also told the AD that the country is still using less gas than it would in a normal year.
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