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Turning HBE certificates into euros: Embracing smart solutions

In the first two parts of this series, we explored how businesses can generate additional revenue through HBEs (Hernieuwbare Brandstofeenheden, or Renewable Fuel Units) and the process for obtaining them. This third segment dives into the value of HBEs, trading strategies, and how Koolen Industries helps customers navigate the process from certificates to euros.

HBE inboeken en meten met GRID

||| This article is part 3 in a series on HBEs. Read part 1, “Renewable Fuel Units (HBEs): What Are They, and Can You Earn Money with Them?” here and part 2, “Charging Electric Transport at Our Business: How Do We Receive HBE Certificates?” here.


How does the HBE market operate?

In the first part of this series, we gave an estimate of the extra income HBEs can earn from various charging stations. At the end of the day, the income is determined by the market value of HBE certificates, which is decided by market forces. However, the HBE market lacks transparency.

This is because 97% of the current supply of HBEs is made up of biofuels, with just a handful of businesses responsible for a large share of bookings. On the demand side, fossil fuel suppliers required to use HBEs represent another relatively small group.

Trading HBEs among these two parties involves large volumes, starting from 10,000 HBEs per transaction. There are two trading methods: direct between two parties or through an intermediary, known as a broker, who provides market information for a fee.

HBE price formation

The lack of market transparency and the challenge of accessing price information for smaller players are due to the market dynamics mentioned above. HBE prices have fluctuated between 10 and 20 euros over the past year, with biofuel prices significantly influencing HBE pricing.

The annual HBE requirement for businesses supplying fossil fuels for transportation is increasing each year; the table below details this. The percentage represents the quota of HBEs a business must hold annually, with each HBE representing 1 GJ of energy. For example, a business supplying 1000 GJ of fossil fuels for transportation must have at least 189 HBEs (18.9%) on its books for 2023.

As the HBE requirement increases each year, so does the demand for HBE certificates, which can be met with HBEs from electric deliveries.

From certificates to euros

Owners of charging stations have the opportunity to make additional income with HBEs. The number of HBEs that one can account for at a charging plaza is typically small compared to the larger players, making individual trading challenging due to the usually large trade volumes. So, it's advisable to pool these smaller volumes and offer them collectively at a better price.

At Koolen Industries, we help facilitate this process. We combine our customers' HBEs and sell them in larger volumes on more favorable terms. In return, we ask for a portion of the proceeds, often offset by the benefits of selling in larger volumes.

Ready to get started

Convinced of the possibilities and opportunities that HBEs offer your business? We can help you realize your HBE potential! Within the Koolen Industries group, we have all the necessary resources to support you throughout the entire trajectory. Whether you already own charging stations or are still in the exploratory phase, you can always reach out to us. We help with:


- Network connections

- Limited power situations

- HBEs

- Business cases for solar panels, charging infrastructure, and battery solutions

Charging plaza implementation

- Charging plaza design

- Own production of charging stations in the Netherlands

- Installation by our Dutch technicians

Setting up solar roofs or field arrangements

- Design (visual and technical)

- Installation by our own Dutch technicians

Battery configurations

- Design

- Own production of battery solutions in the Netherlands

Intelligent control systems

- Digital twin of installation

- Monitoring of all hardware in a central online platform

- Smart control of charging stations and batteries


- Collecting necessary data

- Saving all necessary measurement data

- Automated booking of HBE’s

With our software you can keep track of energy supplied and generated, and the number of HBEs to be accounted for, with actual automatic accounting at set times.

We maintain excellent relationships with verifiers (responsible for approving HBE accounting) to ensure that our clients meet all requirements and that the verification process is seamless. We can trade certificates on your behalf from our collective account and payout under the best conditions.


Calculate Your Earning Potential in 2 Minutes

We’ve put together a simple tool that helps you get an estimate of your earning potential with HBEs in just 2 minutes. Get started yourself through the link below, or reach out to our team for further help.

HBE expert Woytek Bode Koolen Industries

This article was written by Woytek Bode, HBE expert at Koolen Industries. If you wish to fully understand how this applies to your situation or how we can help with your energy or charging issues, please reach out to Woytek via email.


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