2022 was the sunniest summer the Netherlands has ever seen
According to data from the Dutch Weather Institute (KNMI), this summer the Netherlands has recorded a record amount of solar radiation, making it the sunniest summer the country has ever seen.
KNMI records 239 Watts per square metre of solar radiation
Solar radiation is recorded at all five KNMI bases stationed across the Netherlands, from up north near Groningen to down south in Maastricht. By the end of August, the KNMI had recorded an average of 239 Watts per square metre of radiation, significantly higher than the 1991 to 2020 average of 206, and beating the previous record of 229 set in the sunny summer of 1976.
Of course, the solar radiation recorded wasn’t evenly distributed across the whole country - some parts were sunnier than others. On average, the KNMI calculates that the west coast of the Netherlands receives around 9 percent more sun in the summer than the eastern regions.
This year’s figures fit in with the larger trend observed by the KNMI that the Netherlands has continued to see a stable increase in solar radiation since the 1990s: “In the summer there is an increase of 3 percent every 10 years, and in the spring it’s 5 percent.” The weather institute expects that, by 2085, the Netherlands will see an average of 219 Watts per square metre every summer.
The Netherlands continuing to see a rising amount of sunshine
The record amount of sunshine has also, unsurprisingly, meant that the Netherlands has produced a record amount of solar energy this summer. Data from Energieopwek - a site that tracks the production of (renewable) energy - shows that this summer, the Netherlands generated 40 percent more solar power than during the same period in 2021.
There are, however, also some other less positive side effects of the sunny weather. Aside from the blue skies and warm weather, the sunshine has also contributed to the drought currently plaguing the Netherlands (as well as the majority of Europe).