On 18 December 2020, our Project Coordinator Ugo Simeoni chaired the last ROBINSON Islands Energy Forum of 2020. Bringing together the members of the ROBINSON’s Replication Advisory Board (RAB), islands representatives and experts, this bimonthly event aims to support geographical islands in their energy transition.
Collaborating with other existing platforms and initiatives, such as the Clean Energy for EU Islands Initiative (CE4EUI), the bimonthly ROBINSON Islands Energy Forum aims to be a platform to share best practices, knowledge and experiences, to connect with other islands, and to interact with experts.
We invite every island to join and to contact us:
Islands share unique challenges that they have to overcome: dependency on mainland connection or boat connection, higher energy prices, seasonality, fluctuating energy demands often characterise islands’ energy profile all around Europe. Therefore, the networking aspect of the Forum is surely one of its strength: being around a virtual table with other stakeholders who have faced, or are facing, your same challenges, who share your dreams and aspirations and are walking along the same energy transition path is incredibly valuable.
Imagine that, for example, you do not know what is the best approach to decarbonise phishing vessels or the public transport on your island; once you share your issue, you discover that someone else in the call has faced the same issue and shares with you possible solutions, hidden challenges, best practices. This is the way envisioned by the ROBINSON Islands Energy Forum to approach the energy transition: through cooperation and knowledge sharing.
But, of course, the advantages of the Forum do not stop there. Indeed, to kick off the work, George Arampatzis, Assistant Professor in the School of Production Engineering and Management of the Technical University of Crete and partner of the ROBINSON project, presented to the attendees a few concrete steps and tools to start the process towards the energy transition on islands.
George Arampatzis started with a presentation on the pillars for a Clean Energy Transition Agenda (CETA) (based on the CE4EUI guidelines), focused on the development of a transition strategy to be developed by the island’s authorities together with the local stakeholders. He gave the audience a number of tips and useful documents that the ROBINSON consortium recommended to start the transition. These include an explanation on the role and the importance of setting up a Transition Team, bringing together a team of stakeholders that will work on the transition agenda, and a useful questionnaire that will help islands to collect and interpret their data.
This concrete approach is based on previous experiences and offers concrete tools that can help start a process that could otherwise seem overwhelming. This is fundamental to encourage islands to embrace their huge potential to be frontrunners in the decarbonisation of energy systems.
Support, networking and cooperation between the different European and global islands, but also with other European initiatives such as the CE4EUI and NESOI are the trademark of the Forum. We invite every island to join and to contact us at: firstname.lastname@example.org