Solar power on a cloudy day

Who says solar panels need sunshine?

Not the Dutch government. In fact, despite the fact that sunny days are not especially common in the Netherlands, the Dutch are planning to transform their medieval-era parliament building in The Hague into a solar powered center of power, according to a recent NEWS FOR CHANGE report.

Recent Must Reads

10/25 – Sing along with Mr. Torture

10/24 – Running on empty

10/21- Russian church rides the rails

10/20 – Eco-Christianity in the Rockies

The practicality of the plan is a little suspect: The capital gets an average of 131 days of rainfall per year and surely more cloudy days on top of that.

Solar energy makes sense for a country with half its landmass below sea level in a time when the globe is warming and the polar ice caps melting. But the country’s intentions may be more political than environmental. Though government officials deny any correlation, the solar annoucement comes just weeks before a November UN conference on climate change and a month after Greenpeace activists placed solar panels on an adjacent building.


Mother Jones was founded as a nonprofit in 1976 because we knew corporations and the wealthy wouldn't fund the type of hard-hitting journalism we set out to do.

Today, reader support makes up about two-thirds of our budget, allows us to dig deep on stories that matter, and lets us keep our reporting free for everyone. If you value what you get from Mother Jones, please join us with a tax-deductible donation today so we can keep on doing the type of journalism 2019 demands.