ESIN

European Small Islands Federation

New Island Definition

Kotisaari

The European Commission’s Directorate-General for Energy has provided us with a new definition of the elusive nature of an island, ”being characterised as permanently inhabited with a population of minimum 20, surrounded by saline water, whether or not interconnected by road, power line or any other infrastructure.”

This was created within the context of the ”Islands Initiative” which shall support transition to clean energy on islands.

We most happily acknowledge our European Union has come a long way from its old opinion that an island is not an island if it has fewer than 50 permanent residents, is attached to the mainland by a rigid structure, is less than 1 km from the mainland, or is home to the capital of an EU state.

Thank you Brendan Devlin! It may seem a small step for a European Government official, but it is a giant step for our part of mankind.

Just making sure: basically, an island remains a piece of land surrounded by water.

The island pictured is Kotisaari near to Rovaniemi in Finland, photo Jani Ylinampa. It does not have 20 inhabitants, no electricity, it is in a sweetwater lake, there is a flagpole, a well and a bridge and it is an island and a home to people who deserve our respect and understanding.

3 Comments»

  Zrinka Mendas wrote @

That is fantastic news! I was looking forward to a more precise definition and now I can finally use this one in my research papers…

  Christian wrote @

Hello dear Zrinka.

The definition can be found here, in the ”Tender Specifications”, page 8: https://etendering.ted.europa.eu/cft/cft-documents.html?cftId=3039

It is not a general EU island definition as it’s scope is narrowed to energy. But still much better than the old one!

All the best!
Chris

  Zrinka Mendas wrote @

Thank you very much for this link


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