In Crete, EU strives for clean energy transition on islands

Wikimedia/ User Sandpiper

New Europe — The first Clean Energy for EU Islands Forum was launched in Chania, Crete, on September 22 as part of an effort to act decisively on the decarbonisation of EU islands. The Forum, which was attended by Climate Action and Energy Commissioner Miguel Arias Cañete and Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, aims to accelerate the clean energy transition on EU islands, ensuring secure and cheap energy to their citizens, and create local jobs.



Last November, the European Commission published the so-called Clean Energy for all Europeans package, which is now being negotiated by the EU Member States and the European Parliament.

Following up on this – at the Informal Energy Council in Valetta on May 18 – the European Commission, together with 14 Member States, signed the political declaration to accelerate the clean energy transition on all EU islands.

In 2012 Greece received EU funds to study the electricity interconnection of the country with Cyprus and Israel, through Crete using submarine cables.

Linking Crete to the mainland grid could be seen as the first step towards realising that ambitious goal.


The state would face a large bill for the interconnector project, but that would very quickly turn into profits given the savings from subsidising diesel powered electricity in the island.

The interconnection scheme could also find investors who want to build wind power and solar heat generation units on the island.

If Crete gets interconnected it could exploit  its enormous wind and sun potential and sell power to the mainland grid.