End consumers

In the Netherlands, intensive work is being done on a sustainable, reliable and affordable energy landscape. End users in the energy market, such as large consumers and small consumers (consumers and small SMEs), play an essential role in reducing their energy consumption and making their energy supply more sustainable. By gaining insight into the energy consumption of end users and the progress of sustainability, targeted measures can be taken to accelerate the energy transition. On this page you will find valuable information about who small and large consumers are and what their consumption looks like.

Change in final energy consumption per sector (in PJ) – Source: CBS

final energy consumption per sector 2021 (in PJ) – Source: CBS

Who are the end consumers?

Dutch industry is responsible for 30% of the final consumption of electricity. In 2021, the industrial sector used 550 PJ, making it the country’s biggest end consumer. Households and transportation followed, with 425 PJ (24%) and 385 PJ (22%) respectively. Waste and water, together with services, are responsible for 270 PJ (15%) of the final consumption. Finally, agriculture used 165 PJ (9%).

Industry remains the leader in terms of final consumption. Between 1995 and 2010, the industrial final consumption only fell below 600 PJ for a single year. However, industry’s final consumption has since fallen slowly, and reached a historic minimum since 1990 over the last few years. The same trend can be seen in households, the second biggest end consumers. The final consumption of transportation continued to rise until 2010, peaking at 500 PJ in 2008. Since then, this has gradually dropped to its current 385 PJ. The final consumption of services, on the other hand, has increased over the years – from 213 PJ in 1990 to more than 300 PJ between 2010 and 2015. The agricultural final consumption remains reasonably stable, between 150 and 200 PJ.

Change in the industrial energy mix (in PJ) – Source: CBS

Energy mix industry 2021 (in PJ) – Source: CBS

What does the consumption from the industrial sector look like?

The industrial sector, as the biggest end consumer in the Netherlands, uses a mix of energy sources to carry out its activities. The largest components are gas, thermal, electricity, and oil. At 170 PJ, about a third of the industrial final consumption is through natural gas. In recent decades, the industrial final consumption of natural gas has declined sharply, from around 220 PJ in the 1990s to a minimum of 155 PJ in 2009. After natural gas, thermal had long been the second most important component of the industrial energy mix. Its use rose from 120 PJ to 175 PJ between 1990 and 2005 before experiencing a sharp drop. Now thermal counts for less than 100 PJ, making it the smallest of the four large components. Electricity saw a similar trend, with continuous growth to 150 PJ in 2008, and then a decline to the current 125 PJ. Oil, on the other hand, has now overtaken electricity and thermal as the former least important source. The final consumption of oil has slowly risen from 100 PJ in 1990 and now – as a source – contributes 130 PJ (24%) to the total final consumption. This makes the industry sector at least 56% dependent on fossil fuels.

Change in the domestic energy mix (in PJ) – Source: CBS

What do we consume at home?

Households are the second biggest end consumers in the Netherlands. The energy mix for consumption is dominated by natural gas. Despite a sharp drop since the peak of 470 PJ in 1996, natural gas is still the main energy source for household final consumption in 2021, at 300 PJ (71%). The other 29% are made up of 82 PJ of electricity (19%), 25 PJ of renewables (6%) and 13 PJ of thermal (3%).

Most of the natural gas is used to heat homes. The 6% renewables mainly consists of biomass, solar thermal and heat pumps serving as heating installations. The 3% thermal is different from the other sources, as this only relates to the direct supply of hot water and steam, as in district heating.

Change in the energy mix of services (in PJ) – Source: CBS

What does the service sector consume?

The service sector uses a unique mix of energy sources. The demand for electricity in this sector has risen sharply in recent years. In 2021, electricity accounted for 130 PJ (48%) of the total energy consumption. This is twice as much as the 67 PJ consumed in 1990. Natural gas was good for 110 PJ (41%). Consumption of natural gas in the service sector is slowly falling from the 150 PJ it has long fluctuated around. The remaining consumption of 30 PJ (11%) in this sector was divided fairly evenly between oil, renewables, and thermal.

Wat staat er op de energierekening?

* Kleinverbruiker: een kleinverbruiker is iemand die een elektriciteitsaansluiting heeft die niet groter is dan 3×80 ampére en/of een gasaansluiting heeft die niet groter dan G25 is (en laat max 40m3 gas per uur door). Een standaard huishouden valt binnen de categorie van kleinverbruiker.