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Current position: Index > Market analysis > European Market > The Road of Biomass Transformation in the Netherlands
The Road of Biomass Transformation in the Netherlands
Time:2019-01-16



Although the Dutch biomass industry started late, but with the advantages of high technology content and small technology investment, it has come out of its own development model in the European biomass energy industry.



Although the Dutch biomass industry started late, but with the advantages of high technology content and small technology investment, it has come out of its own development model in the European biomass energy industry.


Compared with the developed wind power industry in the Netherlands, although the biomass industry is slightly inferior in "fame", it is between Bo Zhong in "strength". In the face of the decline in production in the Groningen gas field and the political risk of natural gas supply in Russia, the Dutch have taken a different approach to natural gas production and vigorously developed the biomass energy industry to make it an important supplementary energy source for natural gas. Ensures the Netherlands' status as a natural gas exporter in Europe.



Transformation from Natural Gas to Biomass



In the north of the Netherlands, the city of Groningen, near the German border, is a typical European town. The city's sprawling canals, pigeons in the central square, Gothic dwellings and churches make it difficult to combine the city of Groningen with the energy heart of the Netherlands. It is not only close to the North Sea, is an important center for the future development of offshore wind power in Europe, but also contains a wealth of natural gas treasures. The name of Groningen also comes from the world's top ten natural gas fields-Groningen gas field. Since the 1950s, the Groningen gas field has guaranteed the Dutch natural gas export status. The unique resource conditions also make Groningen province gather many energy research and development companies, scientific research institutions, so that Groningen province has become a major energy province in the Netherlands. However, the aura of natural gas is fading in Groningen province. In early 2014, the Dutch government suddenly announced that it would significantly control and reduce production at the Groningen gas field because of a persistent earthquake on top of the huge gas field, causing public opinion in the local community to boil. Pressure has been put on the government to completely halt the development of natural gas for half a century in Groningen. This is not good news for the European gas market, although the current production of the Groningen gas field can barely meet local energy needs. But against the backdrop of tensions between Russia and the EU, efforts by EU member states to reduce their dependence on Russian gas will face more challenges once the Netherlands cuts gas exports.



The Dutch government, energy companies and scholars hope that biomass energy will be used to make up for the natural gas gap caused by the decline in production in the Groningen gas field and avoid the political risk from Russian gas supply. therefore, the government will take the lead. A series of scientific research projects around the utilization of biomass resources have begun, and the large-scale biomass energy industry chain in the north of the Netherlands is quietly rising.



The Dutch city of Groningen is located on Energieweg Street in the west of the city, which is different from the rest of the city because of the color of new energy. This is the site of the RenQi project led by the Ministry of Economic Affairs of the Netherlands. The whole street and community has been built into an energy supply center. The University of Groningen, one of the world's top 100 universities, is as old as the city for hundreds of years. (Energy Academy Europe) is an academic organization of the University of Groningen that focuses on energy technology research and development and coalition. it is also the overall implementer of the biomass research project RenQi. According to Mr. Zheng Wanli, director of China affairs in the energy field of the college: "the RenQi project is attended by the government, enterprises, scientific research institutes, and the general public, and its purpose is to utilize new energy sources such as biomass through the recycling of new energy resources," said Zheng Wanli, director of China affairs in the energy field of the college. To build an energy-saving and environmentally friendly ecological community ". "RenQi" comes from the pinyin of the Chinese character "popularity", "human" refers to the stakeholders in the industrial chain, and "gas" refers to the green gas energy including biomass gas. The RenQi project includes five research fields: pipe network optimization research and development of anaerobic fermentation technology research and development of biogas purification technology and energy education. Energy enterprises and institutions are the core participants in the RenQi project, the scale of enterprises is generally small, the division of labor in the project is clear, and each performs its own duties. The RenQi project provides a large number of interns and research cases for local energy colleges and universities, drives the scientific and technological innovation of the local biomass industry, and makes the scientific and technological strength of small enterprises in the Dutch biomass industry walk in the forefront of the world.

The Survival Law of Small Company



The development of the Dutch biomass industry is supported by thousands of small companies. DMT, a Dutch company dedicated to biomass biogas purification, for example, has hundreds of technology patents, although it is a small business with fewer than 20 people. DMT is located in Heerenveen, just half an hour's drive from Groningen. DMT is a participant in the RenQi project, focusing on the development of biogas purification technology in the project. It is this team of just 20 people that has created hundreds of technology patents in the biogas purification industry, which can even be compared with some large domestic energy groups in terms of technology research and development.




Mr. Jan Kruit, marketing director of DMT, told reporters. "since its establishment more than 20 years ago, all the energy has been doing biogas purification and other back-end processing business, and has not considered expanding to the upstream of the industrial chain, which to a certain extent avoids unnecessary investment in unfamiliar areas." As Mr. Jan Kruit points out, DMT is only part of the industry chain, with more than 2000 companies operating biogas in Groningen province, most of which are generally small. Those with more than 100 employees are already the "giants" in the Dutch biomass industry chain. BioLake, located in the northern Dutch province of Frisian, is an enterprise focused on the upper reaches of the Dutch biomass industry chain. Compared with DMT, the company seems to be more streamlined in size. With a joint contribution of 4 million euros from four farmers in the northern Netherlands, the company has set up an anaerobic fermentation system next to the dairy farm to treat 70,000 tons of livestock manure a year, producing dairy products at the same time. Sell purified biogas to local filling stations and natural gas pipeline networks to achieve multiple profit models for agricultural products and new energy sources. Although there are thousands of companies like DMT and BioLake in the Netherlands, the biomass energy industry sees no overcapacity or vicious competition in a small country of less than 50, 000 square kilometers. On weekdays, these companies focus on research and development in their own areas, the company's sales department does not seem to be as busy as it seems, the whole industry is like this country, operating in an orderly, peaceful and orderly manner.



However, when business opportunities come, it is often not individual enterprises that touch, but the nerves of the entire industrial chain. Not long ago, a domestic energy group inspected the local biomass energy technology, with the intention of introducing it into the country for demonstration and promotion. Because biomass energy is a new business field for the domestic company, it is inexperienced in industrial chain and technology. DMT, which is responsible for docking, introduced several upstream and downstream enterprises of the industrial chain and participated in the negotiations with domestic enterprises after being informed of the situation. This is a true portrayal of the biomass industry chain in the Netherlands, according to Mr. Jan Kruit: "it may be difficult for the Chinese to understand this business model, and there are few energy enterprises in the Netherlands that cover the entire industrial chain, such as China. However, when business opportunities come, these small enterprises distributed at all ends of the industrial chain will gather as a whole. on weekdays, they will focus on R & D in related fields, make breakthroughs in technology, and business opportunities will come. Will inform other enterprises in the industrial chain to participate together, their own skills, to meet the needs of customers to the greatest extent, avoid competitive risks, show strength, mutual benefit and win-win. The strategic alliance has tied together small companies in the whole industry chain of biomass in the Netherlands. although the Dutch biomass industry started relatively late, it has the advantages of high scientific and technological content and low technology investment in the European biomass energy industry. Out of their own development model, gradually attracted the attention of domestic and foreign investors. The vigorous development of biomass industry has also led to the cause of energy education in the north of the Netherlands. The local famous Groningen University, Wetsus Laboratory and other institutions have offered courses in the field of biomass energy, attracting students from all over the world to engage in the field of biomass energy research. Perhaps this business wisdom not only made the 17th century Dutch a "sea coachman" who monopolized maritime trade, but also made the Netherlands a rising star in Europe's biomass energy.




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