PM Mitsotakis at COP28: Greek shipowners should play a leading role in maritime decarbonization
Πηγή Φωτογραφίας: EUROKINISSI
Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis announced that the island of Poros will be included in the GR-Eco Islands sustainability program, following the islands of Astypalea and Halki, speaking at the 28th Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP28), in Dubai on Friday.
This will be pursued in collaboration with the UAE’s MASDAR, one of the world’s largest renewable energy companies, added Greek government sources.
The agreement for the funding of Poros’ green transformation was signed by the Greek Environment & Energy Ministry and Abu Dhabi Future Energy CompanyPJSC – Masdar, at COP28’s Greek Pavillion. It was signed in the presence of Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis and the President of both COP28 and Masdar, Dr Sultan Al Jaber.
Elaborating on why Poros was chosen, the Greek Premier noted that it is a small island, not far from Athens, and the maritime interconnections from Poros to the mainland are relatively short in distance and duration.
It is far easier to power short ferry journeys than longer ones, he added. Poros is also a popular sailing destination, “which means that ideas about ‘cold ironing’ can also be tried out, namely how we can transform port infrastructures so as to have a clear green footprint.”
The transformation of Poros into a green island is based on four key aspects, as conveyed by the premier, sources added:
– Building a photovoltaic park to cover a significant part of the island’s annual energy needs
– Powering with electricity the ferry connection between Poros and Galatas on the mainland, also developing an e-ship to that effect
– Boosting overall e-mobility in both public and private transportation
– Developing a new system of circular economy based on recycling and proper utilization of waste
COP28 President, Dr. Sultan Al Jaber, spoke of a “very important milestone in the broader relationship between the UAE and Greece,” and also of a “ very important and relevant corporate relationship we have created between Masdar and many entities in Greece.”
Greece continues being a rather significant, strategic partner for the UAE, and it also continues being “ an important, interesting and profitable investment destination for Masdar and many other similar investment institutions in the UAE.”
Earlier on Friday, Mitsotakis participated in a discussion with US Special Climate Envoy, John Kerry, in the context of an event for the 9th ‘Our Ocean Conference’, which Greece is hosting in April 16-17, 2024.
Referring to Greece’s so-called ‘blue economy’, Mitsotakis said “we are indeed a blue country: We have 170 inhabited islands and plenty more uninhabited ones. We have 14,000 kilometers of coastline, and feel we have an additional obligation to protect our marine biodiversity.”
At the same time, he added, “ we are the world’s leading global shipping power, controlling nearly 25% of the global shipping fleet. The entire issue of maritime decarbonization is of great and special significance to us.”
In this context, he added, “ I would like for our shipowners and ship managers to take the lead in adopting new technologies that will contribute to decarbonisation, in a sector that is, by definition, hard to decarbonise.”
Mitsotakis also inaugurated COP28’s Greek pavillion, where several side events, including Friday’s, are being held.
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