The European Commission awarded the Greek island of Tilos the third prize of the EU RESponsible Island for 2020, amounting to 100,000 euros, it announced on Friday on the sidelines of European Days for Research and Innovation.
The award was given in recognition of the island’s innovative energy solutions and contribution to a sustainable and climate - friendly Europe.
The first prize was awarded to the Danish island of Ærø, which was accompanied by a € 500,000 prize from Horizon 2020, and the second, worth €250,000, was awarded to Spanish island of El Hierro, in the Canary Islands.
The EU Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth, Maria Gabriel, congratulated the winners of the award, adding they will serve as a source of inspiration for other islands and energy communities.
Gabriel noted that " islands can be inspiring examples of how to involve local communities and citizens in realising the ambitious goals of the European Green Deal. This, together with the transformation of local energy systems with innovative renewable energy technologies, is what the RESponsible Island Prize is all about. I warmly congratulate the prize winners, who will inspire other islands and energy communities."
In a statement, the EU Commission noted that over recent years, "Tilos has accelerated its clean energy transition thanks to the commitment of the local municipality and the pro-environmental culture of its citizens. Its innovative energy model with community-scale wind and solar, battery energy storage and advanced energy management will inspire other islands and local communities."
"More than 20 million EU citizens live on islands. These islands often have high local energy costs, but they can benefit from the transition to renewable energy sources in many ways, such as local job creation and sustainable tourism. Islands are therefore ideal test labs to develop innovative energy technologies and can serve as energy transition models for small communities in general."
Click HERE for Tilos EU fact sheet.