The Pact of Islands is a European initiative adopted by the European Parliament that embraces European island authorities that commit to take concerted action in line with the EU 2020 energy targets through the support and promotion of renewable energy, energy efficiency and sustainable transport projects at local level.
The island authorities signing the Pact of Islands enter a political engagement which highlights the vulnerability of islands to climate change, stresses the need for energy security and the importance to lower the dependence in imported fuels, while reminds the high economic, environmental and cultural values of the most popular touristic destinations in Europe; the European islands.
The Pact of Islands document is structured in a manner similar to the Covenant of Mayors; however still different to take into account the particularities of the European island communities. In this context the European Parliament supports the role of island communities in the mobilisation against global warming through the Declaration 37/2011 which recognises the Pact of Islands as an EU initiative parallel to the Covenant of Mayors.
Signatories make a number of significant commitments, such as:
How did it start?
In March 2009 a call for proposals was launched by DG Energy inviting interested island partnerships to submit proposals for the development of a binding Pact of Islands committing island authorities to plan, develop and implement a series of Island Sustainable Energy Action Plans (ISEAPs) and a pipeline of bankable projects with the view to achieve a minimum of 20% CO 2 emissions reduction by the year 2020.
A consortium of 12 European islands was formed in March 2009 and the ISLE-PACT proposal was submitted and selected by DG Energy as the winning proposal. The consortium is led by Comhairle nan Eilean Siar (CnES – the regional authority of the Outer Hebrides of Scotland) and includes partners from Gotland – Sweden, Samsø – Denmark, Azores and Madeira – Portugal, Canary Islands and Balearics – Spain, Sardinia – Italy, Malta, the Greek Islands of the Aegean, Crete and Cyprus.
The Grant Agreement was signed on behalf of the consortium by CnES at the end of December 2009. The project was supported by the Islands Commission of the CPMR - Conference of Peripheral Maritime Regions of Europe. The CPMR Islands Commission in its 2010 General Assembly in the Azores unanimously approved a Resolution in favour of the project.