The Dutch senate (Eerste Kamer) has rejected a proposal to phase out the country’s net-metering scheme from 2025. The Tweede Kamer, the Dutch lower chamber of parliament, had approved the proposal by former Energy Minister Rob Jetten in February 2023.

According to several Dutch media outlets, the rejection of the new measure was mainly due to the opposition of the BBB, a right-wing populist political party, and the GroenLinks-PvdA party. Both parties claimed that the phasing-out of the scheme would have increased the payback time to deploy PV systems, thus making them unviable for low-income households.

Lawmakers who submitted the proposal had argued that net metering is now becoming a way of over-subsidizing rooftop PV, given the recent steep drop in module prices.

The solar sector was not against the proposal, in principle. For example, trade group Holland Solar believes that maintaining the net-metering mechanism would put a brake on the long-term growth of the rooftop solar market. It has claimed that the proposal would still ensure the further development of the residential PV segment in the country, but only if specific incentive schemes for batteries were introduced.

In 2021, Netbeheer Nederland, the Dutch association of electricity and gas network operators, and Energy Storage NL proposed the phasing-out of the net-metering regime, in combination with a rebate program for storage systems.

They said that would make it possible to bring battery technologies to commercial maturity in the Dutch market by as early as this year. They said that solar capacity has been growing too quickly and that grid bottlenecks are becoming a serious issue, especially for the nation’s low-voltage network.

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