SMILEGOV – Smart Island Governance

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The project idea in a nutshell

Project SMILEGOV is built on the idea that cooperation between different levels of governance of islands (i.e. national, regional, local) can play a key role in reaching the 20-20-20 EU goals in the area of energy and climate change.

Good multilevel cooperation is identified as one of the key points for consistent and eventually effective sustainable energy planning at local level. Especially when it comes to island communities, this proves to be crucial for the balanced development of the island, the resources management, the economic growth and the quality of life for citizens and visitors.

The project is funded by IEE – Intelligent Energy Europe. It is looking at what is successful and what is tricky in implementing Sustainable Energy planning on Islands.

To support this process, Project SMILEGOV has set clusters of European islands in the largest part of the European insular regions: The Atlantic area (Canaries, Scotland), the Baltic Sea (Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Finland, Estonia) and the Mediterranean area (Italy, Malta, Cyprus, Greece). Through the formation of island slands and exchange of knowledge at local and regional level, we want to identify Strategic Guidelines to overcome existing barriers with the assistance of islands that are more advanced on this path, and we learn from each other.

SMILEGOV and the Pact of Islands

Project SMILEGOV will build on the experience gained during the ISLE-PACT project (www.islepact.eu) through which 62 European islands developed sustainable energy plans, as well as specific bankable projects. A fundamental goal for SMILEGOV is to enable significant progress of at least 50 projects that derive from the sustainable energy action plans developed and are facing problems for implementation.

Islands that have no experience in energy planning and have not had the chance to work on sustainable energy projects yet will also be invited to join the SMILEGOV clusters. Those islands will receive training with the aim to strengthen the local capacity, be inspired to develop an action plan for the reduction of their CO2 emissions by 20% by 2020 and also be invited to join the “Pact of Islands” family. For each cluster, a cluster leader will be the contact point responsible for this process.

What More Is In There For You?

By joining your local SMILEGOV islands cluster your island will:

  • become a member of the greatest European sustainable islands network
  •  strengthen its collaboration with neighbouring islands and island communities
  • benefit from the workshops for energy planning and financing of sustainable energy projects
  • have an insight view of success stories and good examples for island sustainable projects
  • have members of staff or from your island community receiving certified training on energy planning and project’s development
  • have access and guidance through the existing Pact of Islands guidelines and tools and receive technical assistance during the sustainable energy planning process

What is happening in the Scottish Cluster? 

The Scottish cluster brings together a number of islands in Argyll and Bute, North Ayrshire and Highland: Mull, Iona, Lismore, Luing, Bute, the Small Isles ( Eigg, Muck, Canna and Rum), Sleat ( Skye), Cumbrae and Arran. In our cluster we are working in partnership with CES Community Energy Scotland and under their guidance we are training energy auditors in those islands to undertake the baseline research necessary to start a Island Sustainable Energy plan.  This is funded by CARES and  we hope that the methodology we have developed will also be used by other island energy auditors beyond the end of the project.

Find out more about by visiting www.sustainableislands.eu

Read the SMILEGOV December 2014 update

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