Quantcast
Renewable Energy
Looking towards Livadia harbour on the Greek island of Tilos. Getty Images

Greek Island to Be First in Mediterranean to Power Itself With Only Wind and Solar

The Greek island of Tilos is set to be the first in the Mediterranean to power itself entirely with wind and solar power, The Associated Press reported Sunday.

The final tests of a new system that will allow the island to power itself with batteries recharged by a solar park and 800-kilowatt wind turbine are taking place this summer, and the system is expected to go live later this year.


"The innovation of this program and its funding lies in the batteries—the energy storage—that's what's innovative," project manager Spyros Aliferis told The Associated Press. "The energy produced by the wind turbines and the photovoltaics will be stored in batteries, so that this energy can be used for the grid when there is demand."

The switch is practical as well as sustainable. Tilos is a small island with an outdated, costly power system that is strained when its winter population of 400 expands to 3,000 in the summer.

It currently gets its power from a diesel plant on the island of Kos, which is 69 kilometers (approximately 42.87 miles) away. Tilos is the last of three islands connected to the plant by an underwater cable, the Thomson Reuters Foundation reported.

The system is vulnerable to outages, which can last as long as 12 hours, making life difficult for hotel owner Andreas Lardopoulos, since it can lead to spoiled food and appliance failures.

"Hopefully the renewable energy will help us solve these problems and save some money," Lardopoulos told the Thomson Reuters Foundation.

Which is not to say that environmental concerns aren't also part of the island's motivation.

The island's late mayor Tassos Aliferis was an environmentalist. In addition to first proposing the idea of going renewable, he also banned hunting and expanded eco-tourism.

His successor, Maria Kamma, also hopes green energy will provide a better future both for the island's human residents and its rich biodiversity—it boasts more than 150 bird species and around 350 plant varieties.

Kamma told the Thomson Reuters Foundation that the island's population shrunk to 200 in the 1990s and was only increased due to infrastructure and transportation updates. She said she hoped the green energy initiative would continue this trend and ensure residents "have a very good standard of living."

The European Commission also hopes Tilos can be a model for other islands with similar power woes, The Associated Press reported. The EU funded the 13.7 million-euro ($15.7 million) project to the tune of 11 million euros ($12.5 million).

The EU's goal is one shared by Zisimos Mantas, the chief business development officer of the Greek company in charge of the project: Eunice Energy Group.

"We hope that the Tilos project will be replicated in many more islands," he told the Thomson Reuters Foundation.

Show Comments ()

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

Sponsored
Popular
The Revelator

Interactive Map: Air Pollution in 2100

By Dipika Kadaba

Having a little trouble breathing lately? That's no surprise. Air pollution is already bad in many parts of the country, and climate change is only going to make it worse. Even though many industries are reducing their emissions, a warming climate could actually offset these reductions by intensifying the rates of chemical reactions and accumulation of pollutants in the environment.

Keep reading... Show less
Health
ddukang / iStock / Getty Images Plus

Is Apple Cider Vinegar Good for You? A Doctor Weighs In

By Gabriel Neal

When my brother and I were kids back in the '80s, we loved going to Long John Silver's.

Keep reading... Show less
Animals

Dumpster Debacle Distracts From Serious Spike in Whale Deaths

This week, a video of a failed attempt to put a dead, 4,000-pound whale into a tiny dumpster made the rounds on the internet, garnering chuckles and comparisons to Peter Griffin forklifting and impaling a beached sperm whale on Family Guy.

The juvenile minke whale washed up on Jenness Beach in Rye, New Hampshire on Monday morning, NBC 10 Boston reported. It was found with entanglement wounds, so researchers with the Seacoast Science Center and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) wanted to move the carcass from the beach to a lab for a necropsy to study its death.

Keep reading... Show less
Adventure
Muir Woods, which costs $10 for entry, will have free entry on Sept. 22. m01229 / Flickr / CC BY-NC 2.0

Visit Any National Park for Free This Saturday to Celebrate 25th National Public Lands Day

If you're stuck for plans this weekend, we suggest escaping your city or town for the great outdoors.

This Saturday marks the 25th National Public Lands Day, organized by the National Environmental Education Foundation (NEEF).

Keep reading... Show less
Sponsored
Climate
A glacier flows towards East Antarctica. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center / CC BY 2.0

Temperatures Possible This Century Could Melt Parts of East Antarctic Ice Sheet, Raise Sea Levels 10+ Feet

A section of the East Antarctic Ice Sheet that contains three to four meters (approximately 10 to 13 feet) of potential sea level rise could melt if temperatures rise to just two degrees above pre-industrial levels, a study published in Nature Wednesday found.

Researchers at Imperial College London, the University of Queensland, and other institutions in New Zealand, Japan and Spain looked at marine sediments to assess the behavior of the Wilkes Subglacial Basin during warmer periods of the Pleistocene and found evidence of melting when temperatures in Antarctica were at least two degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels for periods of 2,500 years or more.

Keep reading... Show less
Energy
Oil well in North Dakota. Tim Evanson / Flickr / CC BY-SA 2.0

Pipeline Leaks 63,840 Gallons of Produced Water in North Dakota

A pipeline released 63,840 gallons (1,520 barrels) of produced water that contaminated rangeland in Dunn County, North Dakota, the Bismarck Tribune reported, citing officials with the North Dakota Department of Health.

Produced water is a byproduct of oil and gas extraction, and can contain drilling chemicals if fracking was used.

Keep reading... Show less
Sponsored
Insights
Residents stand in a long queue to fill water containers on May 27 in Shimla, India. Deepak Sansta / Hindustan Times / Getty Images

World Peace Requires Access to Safe Water

International Peace Day is Sept. 21. Mekela Panditharatne, attorney with the Natural Resources Defense Council, submitted the following op-ed to EcoWatch in commemoration.

In drought-ravaged East Africa, the cracks in the plains echo the fault lines splitting tribes.

Across the globe, the devastation of deadly brawls is being exacerbated by tensions over access to water. Water crises, often worsened by governance failures, can portend warning signs for instability and conflict. This year, the World Resources Institute cautioned that water stress is growing globally, "with 33 countries projected to face extremely high stress in 2040." The effects of such water stress span the gamut from civil unrest to open warfare.

Keep reading... Show less
Food

How Your Personality Type Could Influence Your Food Choices

By Melissa Kravitz

"You are what you eat" may be one of the oldest sayings ever to be repeated around the dinner table, but can you also eat what you are?

Keep reading... Show less
Sponsored

mail-copy

The best of EcoWatch, right in your inbox. Sign up for our email newsletter!