During my cleantech tour of the Netherlands last year, I got to interview the head of EnTranCe and another key leader there, an interesting business innovation center for applied sciences that is connected to Hanze University of Applied Sciences and Energy Academy Europe.
Jan-Jaap Aué is Dean of the Institute of Engineering at Hanze University of Applied Sciences, Dean of the Centre of Expertise Energy at Hanze University, and head of EnTranCe, which is part of that centre. Alongside of Jan-Jaap Aué was Wim Van Gemert, Leading Energy Professor for the Energy Transition at the Energy Research Centre at Hanze University.
We talked a bit about EnTranCe, as you can see in the video above, and then also about the natural gas & oil industry. Jan-Jaap and Wim provided some interesting background on the history of natural gas in the Netherlands as well as its influence on the broader natural gas industry.
We also talked about the socio-psychological and behavior changes that are needed in order to change to a cleaner and more sustainable society, and then specifically about a socio-psychological study related to a biomass project that EnTranCe conducted. Some of the key (logical) findings were that people were typically turned off by biogas projects initially due to the smell, but if presented with an opportunity for personal benefit or better understanding of how the project would benefit the community (and, thus, them), they were able to “look past” the scented downside.
Jan-Jaap also discussed a project where they worked together with a small community to improve energy behaviour through various means. The project also brought in corporate partners who brought some newer tech into the mix.
Another topic of discussion toward the beginning and then more so at the end of the interview was power-to-gas technology. This is a popular topic in Germany as a complement to renewable energy (a form of storage that even works as seasonal storage) and apparently also in the Netherlands.