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Features SDE++

11-11-2021

The SDE++ is an operating subsidy. In other words, you receive a subsidy during the operating period of your project. This is the period in which your project costs more than it yields. If you’re planning to produce renewable (sustainable) energy or use carbon-reducing technologies, you may be able to apply for a Stimulation of Sustainable Energy Production and Climate Transition (SDE++) subsidy. 

The SDE++ subsidy has the following features:

Subsidisation of the unprofitable component

Under the SDE++ scheme, you can apply for a subsidy to use renewable energy technologies and other carbon-reducing technologies. We subsidise the unprofitable component of each technology. This is the difference between the cost of the technology that reduces CO2 (the ‘base rate’) and the market value of the product that the technology generates (the ‘corrective amount’). The base rate is fixed for the entire subsidy period, but the corrective amount is set annually. If the market value rises the unprofitable component decreases, and so does the subsidy you receive. Subsidies are granted for periods of 12 or 15 years. The duration of your subsidy will depend on which technology you use.

Base rate and application rate

A different base rate has been set for each technology. The base rate is the cost price for the production of renewable energy or the reduction of CO2 emissions. This base rate is the maximum rate of subsidy you can apply for. If you apply for a lower rate of subsidy, you have a better chance of being granted a subsidy. Accordingly, your application rate will be the same as or less than the base rate.

Corrective amounts and base energy price/base greenhouse gas amount

If you produce and supply energy in the form of electricity, heat, renewable gas, hydrogen gas or advanced renewable fuel with any of the technologies, or if you capture CO2, you will generate revenue. We set the revenue level in the form of a corrective amount. The corrective amount is partly determined by the market value. The maximum SDE++ subsidy is equal to the base rate or application rate minus the corrective amount.
In the SDE++ scheme, the value of Guarantees of Origin (GOs) for the ‘Wind’ and ‘Solar PV’ categories forms part of the corrective amount. The Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency (PBL) sets the value of GOs each year. 

For the ‘Solar PV’ categories, we make a distinction between electricity fed into the grid (‘grid supply’) and electricity you use yourself (‘non-grid supply’). Therefore, there are 2 corrective amounts for the ‘Solar PV’ categories.

A lower limit is set for the corrective amount: the base energy price or the base greenhouse gas amount. The corrective amount may therefore not be lower than the base energy price or the base greenhouse gas amount. We base these amounts on two-thirds of the average expected revenue over the entire duration of the SDE++ subsidy. If the corrective amount is equal to the base energy price or base greenhouse gas amount, you will receive the maximum subsidy.

The base rate or application rate is fixed for the entire duration of the subsidy, but the corrective amount is set annually.

Emissions Trading System (ETS)

The ETS is a market instrument with which the European Union (EU) cost-effectively reduces greenhouse gas emissions to achieve its climate targets. Some of the companies applying for SDE++ subsidies participate in the ETS. If the technology concerned helps prevent the purchase, or yields proceeds from the sale, of CO2 emission allowances under the European Emissions Trading System (EU-ETS), this too is taken into account in the corrective amount.

Phased opening 2021

The 2021 application round for the SDE++ scheme has four phases. During each phase, you may apply for a subsidy only up to a certain subsidy intensity per tonne of CO₂ emissions reduction.. This is the phase limit. In subsequent phases, we gradually increase this maximum subsidy rate per tonne of CO2. You may also submit projects with a lower subsidy requirement than the maximum set for the technology in question. This encourages market operators to submit projects for a lower price, giving them a better chance of obtaining a subsidy. See also the ranking amount calculation tool for the 2021 SDE++ scheme at the bottom of this page.

2021 SDE++ phased call for applications
PhaseStart and dates 2021Phase subsidy intensity limit (€/tonne CO2)
109:00 CET, 5 October to 17:00 CET, 11 October60
217:00 CET, 11 October to 17:00 CET, 25 October80
317:00 CET, 25 October to 17:00 CET, 8 November115
417:00 CET, 8 November to 17:00 CET, 11 November300

First come, first served processing

We will process subsidy applications in the order in which we receive them. Applications received after 17:00 CET or on non-business days are considered to have been received on the next business day. This also applies at the start of a new phase. Within one business day (from 17:00 to 17:00 on the next business day), the time of receipt of the subsidy application does not matter.

Subsidy intensity

We will process subsidy applications in the order in which we receive them. If the budget limit is exceeded on a given day, we will rank the projects on that day based on subsidy intensity. This means that projects with a lower subsidy intensity will be ranked higher.

In 2021, the maximum subsidy intensity for which SDE++ technologies can apply is €300 per tonne CO2. Technologies with a higher subsidy intensity can still apply for an SDE++ subsidy, but for these projects, we may not reimburse the entire unprofitable component. For 2021, this applies to the following technologies:

  • Osmosis 
  • New hydropower, < 50 cm fall height (including energy from free-flowing water and wave energy)
  • New hydropower, ≥ 50 cm fall height
  • Biomass gasification, excluding B-grade wood
  • Sewage treatment plant, improved sludge fermentation, renewable gas
  • Shallow geothermal heat, heating urban environments (3500 full-load hours)
  • Daylight greenhouses
  • Aquathermal, thermal energy from surface water (TEO) or drinking water (TED), base load
  • Aquathermal, thermal energy from surface water (TEO) or drinking water (TED), no base load
  • Electrolytic hydrogen production

Stimulating technologies with a subsidy intensity higher than €300 per tonne CO2 is incompatible with a cost-effective energy transition, which is the intention of the SDE++ scheme.
You should submit your application with an application rate to four decimal places. For ranking purposes, we will round the rate to three decimal places.

The subsidy intensity depends on the rate you apply for (application rate), the long-term price and the emission factor.
Subsidies are applied for, measured and granted per measured unit of electricity, heat, renewable gas, hydrogen, advanced renewable fuel or reduced CO2 emissions. These units need to be converted into subsidy intensities to enable projects to be ranked.

We calculate the subsidy intensity using one of the following formulae:

  • Subsidy intensity, all categories except CO2 capture and storage (CCS) and CO2 capture and utilisation (CCU): subsidy intensity [€/t CO2] = (application rate [€/kWh] – long-term price [€/kWh]) / (emission factor [kg CO2/kWh] / 1,000).
  • Subsidy intensity CO2 capture and storage (CCS) and CO2 capture and utilisation (CCU): subsidy intensity [€/tonne CO2] = (application rate [€/tonne CO2] – long-term price [€/tonne CO2]) / (emission factor [kg CO2/tonne CO2] / 1,000).

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