On 28 March 2017 European islands will convene in the European Parliament for the “Smart Islands Event: Creating New Pathways for EU islands”.
The event will present the Smart Islands Initiative, one that sheds light on the potential of islands to emerge as ideal territories for the deployment of innovative technologies in the fields of energy, transport & mobility, water & waste management and ICT. Currently over 200 European island local and regional authorities support the Initiative.
The Smart Islands event will be hosted by 12 MEPs representing Member States with islands and addressed by Director-General for Energy Dominique Ristori. During the event island representatives will join the official signing ceremony of the Smart Islands Declaration and confirm their islands’ commitment to transform into smart, inclusive and thriving societies, driving Europe’s transition to an innovative and sustainable era.
The event comes at a time of growing interest for islands in Europe.
First, the Maltese Presidency has set priorities, i.e. a deeper single market for digital and energy services, more social inclusion and a boost to blue growth that are pertinent to the goals of the Smart Islands Initiative.
Second, following its “Clean Energy for All Europeans” Communication, the European Commission is now crafting a programme for islands’ energy transition, to be endorsed in 2017.
Lastly, the business and R&D communities have long expressed their interest to test smart and innovative technologies on islands, as showcased by a number of EU-funded projects.
In light of the above, the Smart Islands event aspires to bring together island authorities, EU policy makers, utilities and service operators, market players and citizen groups to discuss how the Smart Islands Initiative can help islands usher into a smart, sustainable and inclusive development paradigm.
For more information, please visit www.smartislandsinitiative.eu