Flanders increasingly strong in green energy production: "This is the foundation on which we continue to build'
Flanders produced more green energy in 2021 than expected. That is according to recent figures from the Flemish Energy and Climate Agency (VEKA).
In 2021, Flanders produced over 25,800 GWh (gigawatt hours) of green energy on its own soil. That is above the forecast of 23,703 GWh and 12 percent more compared to 2020.
Renewable energy production falls into three aspects: green power, green transport and green heat. VEKA's figures show a strong increase in green heat (+21 percent). Regional regulations for new construction and premiums for those switching to heat pumps and better installation are partly responsible for these figures.
Production of green electricity increased slightly (+4 percent) in 2021, due to further investments in solar and wind energy, which together account for 70 percent of Flemish green electricity production in 2021.
Almost a fifth of the region's electricity consumption now comes from renewable energy sources. Production from biomass and biogas falls slightly compared to 2020.
Solar panel installations are increasing in 2022, bringing this year's target of 450 MW of production within reach.
"This is the foundation on which we continue to build," stressed Flemish Energy minister Zuhal Demir. "The energy crisis once again forces us to face the facts, that we need to move away from fossil fuels faster than ever and make full use of our own renewable energy sources."
According to Demir, the rising production of green energy also shows that Flanders was already on the right track before the war in Ukraine. These results are also in line with the REPowerEU plan, which aims, among other things, to make the EU no longer dependent on Russian fossil fuels by 2027.
The increasing production of green energy not only offers climate benefits. It also benefits the local economy by reducing its dependence on renewable energy from abroad.
© BELGA PHOTO JAMES ARTHUR GEKIERE