ESIN

European Small Islands Federation

Archive for Water

“Islands are closed systems in need of an integrated approach.”

Wioletta-2.jpgWhen in Favignana for the Greening the Islands 2017, we met with Wioletta Dunin-Majewska who is a Policy Coordinator at the European Commission’s DG Energy, and a colleague of Brendin Devlin, well-known for us at ESIN.

She made a presentation entitled “clean Energy for EU Islands Initiative”, which we would like to briefly retell:

The Clean Energy Package is DG Energy’s biggest package ever. It comprises 8 legislative proposals under discussion in the Council and the Parliament.

The goal is for the EU to become a low carbon economy via transition of its energy system by:

– putting energy efficiency first

– achieving global leadership in renewable energies

– providing a fair deal for consumers

This package was presented by commissioner Marie Donnelly during the FOP22 meeting in  Marrakech on 14th of November 2016. She said: ”islands are in the package”, and we could the Commission urged the Parliament, the Economic and Social Committee, the Committee of the Regions and the European Investment Bank to consider that “islands and island regions provide platforms for pilot initiatives on clean energy transition and can serve as showcases at international level” (Work Programme Annex dated 30.11.2016).

This was followed by the Malta Declaration on May 17, where the Commission and 14 member States agreed to launch the “Clean Energy for Islands” initiative which will accelerate the clean energy transition on EU’s 2,700 islands, help islands reduce dependency and costs of energy imports by using RES, embrace modern and innovative energy systems, and improve air quality and lower greenhouse gas emissions.

At the Chania Inaugural Forum in Crete September 22, 2107, there was an overwhelming endorsement on highest ecehelon. The Package has thus move through the European political machine in just 10 months, which is a speed record.

https://ec.europa.eu/energy/en/events/clean-energy-all-european-islands-inaugural-forum

The package is becoming more and more tangible. Islands are seen as innovation leaders. They can demonstrate how decarbonisation creates resilient energy systems, create new jobs and foster economic development.

The goal is ambitious: to decarbonise 1,000 island by 2030.

There will be a secretariat for the initiative to help launching decarbonisation plans on islands, host a stakeholder’s exchange platform, as well as organise yearly forums. An islands facility will be set up to support comprehensive energy transitions in preparatory and implementation phase under Horizon 2020, which will be the source of funding, both for making plans and to finance actions. DG Energy talks of a 2-directional approach: some 10 front-runners, and bottom-up partnership with national and regional organisations of islands.

Wioletta said: – “Islands are closed systems in need of an integrated approach.”

Favignanan Castle-1Favignana sunset

Greening the Islands 2017 Award

Me

The European Parliament has assigned ESINs vice president Christian Pleijel to examine how much water eight European islands use, who uses it, what it is used for, where it comes from, what it costs and if it is possible to svae some of this water. The project is run in cooperation with ESIN, the Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm, Hellenic Small Islands Network, CRES in Greece and AIP in France.

In the first phase, field studies were made on all the islands. In a second phase, mayors and water managers from these islands gathered for a three-day workshop on the island of Vis. The challenge was to see if it’s possible to save 25% of the water the island uses.

The answer was both yes and no. They concluded that it is possible to save between 10 and 55%, depending on the island’s situation. In total, this would save 178 million small water per year, which also means 470,000 less kWh, reduced costs of 266,000 euros and reduced CO2 emissions by 42 tonnes.

The project is likely to be part of the DG energy’s major energy initiative on islands, which is supposed to decarbonise 1,000 islands by 2030.

Today, in competition with many other water projects, we were awarded the 2017 prize by the global “Greening the Islands” environmental organization during their annual conference on the island of Favignana, outside of Sicily.

– “We are fighting water waste”, said Pleijel at the ceremony. “Simply put: We produce more water then we need, and we don’t need as much water as we use.”

Our Water Saving Challenge nominated to the Greening the Islands 2017 Award

Mairtin-explains

Greening the islands has nominated three projects for its 2017 Awards in the category “Water”. Our “Water Saving Challenge” is one of them. You can only vote today http://www.greeningtheislands.net/app/#/dashboard/awards. The jury will take into consideration both the quality of the project and the quantity of votes.

PS You have to be a member of Greening the Islands to vote. It is free, it is an excellent organisation and we believe all friends of small islands would want to join it 😉

Picula & Pleijel

Water saving objectives

Group photo

Mayors and water managers from eight islands met on Croatian island Vis to decide if it is possible for islands to save water. The islands – Tilos and Ithaca in Greece, Vis and Lastovo in Croatia, Sein and Houat in France, Cape Clear and Inis Oírr – all have a scarcity of drinking water, mainly due to the development of tourism.

Based on recent, detailed field studies of the water situation on each of the islands made by the KTH Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm and with live support from professors Anders Nordstrom and Sara Borgstrom, the meeting discussed best and worst practices in water saving. Moving further into action planning, they found that clever combinations of changes in human behaviour, simple household and large-scale technologies, smart pricing and governance can lead to savings from 6 to 50% within two years, as reported on Croatian national news https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XfM_bS6yZ6s.

This would mean 18 billions of litres saved a year. If this is desalinated water, it is also a huge saving on energy and money.

With strong support from Tonino Picula http://toninopicula.com/en/from-media/internet-and-press/mep-piculas-project-water-saving-challenge/a2400, the project team is going to document their findings and suggestions to be presented before the Europan Parliament on November 22. They also want to create a ”Islands as Water Saving Labs” two-year project to measure their ongoing accomplishments and to share their knowledge and experiences within the group, to ESIN islands and to all who want to learn how islands manage to make small water footprints.

Billy-Paddy-CathyAnders-Christoforos

Can we save 25% of the water we use?

Map

The first stage of the Water Saving study https://europeansmallislands.com/water-saving-project/ is now complete: total water consumption and water supply on the eight islands Tilos and Ithaca (Greece), Vis and Lastovo (Croatia), Sein and Houat (France), Cape Clear and Inis Oírr (Ireland) have been mapped, in detail. Now Mayors and Water Officers take next step, gathering for a challenge meeting on island Vis, September 22-24.

The challenge is: can we save 25% of the water we use? Is it possible to achieve such savings through a balanced blend of actions including information, household technologies, industrial technologies, governance and pricing?

If so, these islands will save 180 million liters of fresh water. If one hundred islands join the challenge, 18 billion liters of water will be saved. If we can extend this knowledge to all of Europe’s 2,400 islands and coastal communities, the saving on one of nature’s most precious assets is almost unimaginable.

The project’s sponsor, EU Parliamentary, former Foreign Minister of Croatia, Tonino Picula, is hopeful: http://toninopicula.com/en/from-media/internet-and-press/mep-piculas-project-water-saving-challenge/a2400.

The field reports from the eight islands can be found here https://www.dropbox.com/sh/ds7w4oamrlzuvzy/AACAPQwPbFw1Dh8PUzxUayH8a?dl=0