COP 21: islands recognised as an ideal laboratory to test technological innovation to protect the environment

In line with the Paris Agreement, Governments are developing legislative incentive scheme to support small islands

In May 2017 in Malta, the European Commission and Member States signed a political declaration aimed at accelerating energy transition towards renewables in the more than 2,700 European islands

At the Greening the Islands in Favignana, the European Commission has launched the first steps within the “Clean Energy for EU Islands”:

  Objective: 1,000 zero-emission European islands by 2030

  Set up a Secretariat to support EU island decarbonisation plans

  Set up a facility to support islands with Horizon 2020 tenders.


  • Islands strongly need to identify energy and water supply solutions, in respect of the environmental, landscape, geomorphological and social diversity;
  • Need to revise regulations governing permitting processes for facilities that are necessary for island autonomy and sustainability;
  • Need to develop suitable industrial policies to favour investment in innovative solutions on islands, to implement replicable best practices;
  • Need to create the best conditions for efficient project bankability through cooperation between local governments and companies.


  • Islands offer a unique opportunity to test integrated solutions with regard to energy, agriculture, waste, mobility, sustainable tourism, etc.;
  • Islands represent a unique opportunity to test a cooperation between industries leaders in innovative solutions, local and national governments, governmental organizations, local utilities, investors and dedicated media and to promote and disseminate an industrial and environmental culture;
  • Working methodologies and innovative environmental solutions tested on islands can then be replicated in isolated locations and on the mainland.