Στις Βρυξέλες πραγματοποιήθηκε την Τετάρτη 21 Νοεμβρίου το Συνέδριο του Συμφώνου των Νήσων, το οποίο έθεσε τις βάσεις για την συνέχιση της συνεργασίας των Ευρωπαϊκών νησιών για την αειφορία. Στο συνέδριο παρευρέθησαν μέλη του Ευρωπαϊκού Κοινοβουλίου και της Ευρωπαϊκής Επιτροπής καθώς και εκπρόσωποι του Συμβουλίου Περιφερειακών Παράκτιων Περιοχών (CPMR), της Επιτροπής Περιφερειών της Ευρώπης και νησιωτικών οργανισμών τοπικής αυτοδιοίκησης.
Εκ μέρους του Δήμου Θήρας, ο οποίος έχει υπογράψει το σύμφωνο των νήσων, συμμετείχε στο συνέδριο ο ενεργειακός υπεύθυνος του Δήμου, κος Μπελλώνιας Λουκάς. Στο συνέδριο πραγματοποίησαν παρουσιάσεις τα Κανάρια Νησιά, το νησί Samso της Δανίας, ο Δήμος Λέσβου και ο Δήμος Θήρας. Ο κος Μπελλώνιας, αφού παρουσίασε τον ενεργειακό σχεδιασμό του Δήμου μέσω του σχεδίου δράσης για την αειφόρο ενέργεια που έχει εκπονηθεί κατά το τελευταίο έτος, έκανε εκτενή αναφορά στον σχεδιασμό για την μετατροπή της Θηρασιάς σε μία πρότυπη νησιωτική πράσινη κοινότητα.
Υπενθυμίζουμε πως τον περασμένο Σεπτέμβρη ο Δήμος Θήρας υπέβαλε πρόταση προς ένταξη στο πρόγραμμα «Πράσινες Νησιωτικές και Αγροτικές Κοινότητες» που αφορά την νήσο Θηρασιά και προβλέπει παρεμβάσεις σε τομείς όπως η ενεργειακή αναβάθμιση κτιρίων, η διαχείριση υδάτινων πόρων, η ολοκληρωμένη διαχείριση των απορριμμάτων, παραγωγή ενέργειας από ΑΠΕ, μεταφορές, βιοκλιματικές αναπλάσεις χώρων, ανάπλαση μονοπατιών κ.α.
Ομιλία Λουκά Μπελλώνια στο Συνέδριο.
First of all I would like to thank you for inviting me here today, giving me the opportunity to represent the Municipality of Santorini and present to you the main elements of our overall environmental planning. I will also present to you the goals that we have set for the island of Thirasia. Despite the difficulties caused by the financial crisis and the fast-paced reform of the public sector in Greece, that has taken place during the last two years, our Municipality has managed to respond to the requirements of the Isle-Pact. The vision of our Municipality is not just to fulfill the goals set by the Pact of Islands, but to gradually implement an integrated sustainable approach in municipal management. During the first two years of our administration we have made specific steps in this direction. I will begin with the energy sector, where we have formed the Island Sustainable Energy Action Plan, the targets of which you can see. Additionally technical studies for energy upgrades in municipal buildings have been completed and applications for funding through the European Regional Development Fund have been submitted and are currently evaluated. The Municipality has also offered its support to private investors interested in the installation of Photovoltaic Parks on the island, and up to date two of them have been completed. Furthermore, Santorini is one of the five islands taking part in the innovative program under the name ISLE-SMART. The project includes the installation of Energy Control Centers at the production units and smart metering utilities at the end-use points of the electricity network. In this way, Smart Grids can increase the portion of renewable energy sources used in the final energy mix while smart metering can contribute to significant energy savings. More emphasis was given in the field of waste management. The waste collection system was reviewed and upgraded. Collection points and vehicle itineraries were optimized, and significant effort was made on increasing the stream of recycled waste through separation at its source. An information and awareness campaign was launched including printed material, presentations in schools and extensive use of social media. An increase of 240% in recycled waste in the last 2 years is so far recorded. A pilot project for domestic composting of organic waste was also implemented with the distribution of compost bins and information material in 100 households across the island. Finally, a central waste management facility is planned for the first time.
But our most ambitious goal so far is making Thirasia a zero emissions island. Thirasia is part of the Santorini municipality and is located within the famous caldera. Its permanent residents are approximately 260. To achieve the zero emission goal, studies have been done during the last two years in various fields including on site surveys. These fields include
- Environmental protection – Sustainable transports – Renewable energy sources
- Protection and management of Water Resources
- Protection of land systems and management of Solid Waste
As far as the energy consumption of the building sector is regarded, energy upgrades for private and municipal buildings have been planned, for a total of 35 buildings, among them the schools and the medical station of the Island. Regarding the transports sector, as the island is small in size we have planned extensive use of bicycles, but also we gave emphasis in recreating the traditional walk paths. Last but not least we propose the replacement of the public fleet with new electrical vehicles. Additionally, with the collaboration of private investors, a new Wind Park of 1,6 MW is planned to be installed in the south-west part of the island. In the sector of Water management, a new distribution network will be installed, that will cover all the areas of the island, together with a smart monitoring system and a photocatalysis waste water treatment plant. Also water storage infrastructure will be repaired and upgraded. Regarding Waste Management on the Island, separation of the generated Waste at its Source will be implemented, thus maximizing the rate of recovery of the recyclable materials. The biodegradables will be composted on site and specific actions and handling for all types of waste are planned. As additional action for our project we chose to propose two open space bioclimatic reforms in order to improve the microclimate conditions in those locations but also taking into consideration the needs of the local population. Together with all the above actions it is essential to plan the correct and prompt environmental education of the citizens, as it is the key to the success of our project, after the realization of the tasks. With the implementation of the actions described the target of a zero emission green island community can be achieved. The benefits will be multiple both in the short term and longterm. The most important of course is the improvement of the daily life of the 260 residents, but also the upgrade of the touristic profile that Thirasia offers to its visitors. The protection of the unique natural environment of Thirasia is thus combined with stimulating the local economy and creating employment opportunities. Our vision for Thirasia is to form an International Example of Regional Development.
Thank you very much for your attention.