Croatia’s MEP Picula Promotes Cooperation among EU Islands

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Danger from climate change has prompted islands located in the EU to cooperate.

The vice-chairman of the European Parliament group in charge of the islands, Croatia’s MEP Tonino Picula, has submitted an amendment to the project Strengthening cooperation on climate action on the islands within and outside the EU, reports on March 12, 2017.

“I am very happy that the initiative that I and two of my colleagues from the group proposed last year has been approved. This will bring a very tangible result – two million euros have been allocated for our initiative from this year’s budget”, said Picula.

MEPs Tonino Picula, Alfred Sant and Michela Giuffrida pointed out that the aim of this initiative was to make islands the leaders in the use of clean energy and the models for solutions at the European level. Funds for this purpose will be allocated in the next two years as well. “The ultimate goal is to help islands to the greatest extent possible to generate electricity using local sources of clean energy and in that way become more autonomous in their energy supply”, said Picula.

The MEP noted that the project will result in the establishment of the European Energy Islands Forum. It will monitor the progress of islands, encourage their networking, exchange of experiences and transfer of knowledge. The forum will be established during an island conference which will be held on Crete as a preparatory event with key stakeholders, followed by another meeting in Brussels or Bonn in the second half of 2017.

Danger of climate change has prompted EU islands to cooperate, while the Commission will work with member states and island authorities involved in the project. In this way, Picula has used MEPs’ right to once a year submit an action proposal that then passes through the evaluation process of the European Commission and is then voted on in the European Parliament.

Our goal is to deal with the most serious problems that the islands are facing today, added Picula. “The challenges are many, including limited availability of resources and services, isolation, high dependence on a narrow range of economic activities, and very small internal markets.”

Picula has been working on the preservation and improvement of life on the islands since the beginning of his term. His European Parliament group brings together as many as 90 MEPs from 21 countries.


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