Ecoislands Summit brings islands together on a path to sustainability

October 17th, 2012 by Ecoisland

The Global Ecoislands Summit 2012 launched on 16 October 2012 as community leaders, islands representatives, sustainability experts, UK government ministers and technology giants united on a journey to sustainability.

Hundreds of delegates and dignitaries gathered in Cowes on the Isle of Wight to set the stage for a collaborative, community-driven effort to enable islands and regions around the world to achieve renewable energy self-sufficiency by 2020 and sustainability by 2030.

More than 20 islands and regional communities were represented at the summit to learn from the foundations being laid on the Isle of Wight and make their own public commitments by signing the Ecoislands Accord.

The Isle of Wight, driven by Ecoislands’ vision, is becoming a beacon of sustainability for regions around the world.

The Ecoislands’ project will see the creation of a virtual power plant (VPP), integrating renewable generation assets with demand side resources to create an energy balancing system.

The VPP is the key component in the creation of a replicable ‘GREENprint’ being developed on the islands and encompassing energy, waste, water, transport and the green economy, that will provide communities with a roadmap toward living within their means.

It’s a model that has captured the attention of key figures in government including the Minister of State for Energy, John Hayes, who gave the keynote address at the summit.

Ecoislands has also attracted over 65 business partners to date including technology giants such as IBM, Cable&Wireless Worldwide, Scottish and Southern Energy and Toshiba, all of whom spoke at the summit.

It is the community, however, that lies at the heart of this international event and a firm belief that vulnerable regions can take control of their own future.

“Often it is the smallest places that can demonstrate the greatest change and it is time for our political leaders to take note that the people want change,” said David Green, Ecoislands Founder and Chief Executive.

“They want a cleaner, greener lifestyle and they need inspiration projects like this to act as beacons to the rest of the world,” he said.

Global summits are fairly frequent occurrences on the international calendar but Copenhagen, Durban and Rio passed without meaningful commitments.

Ecoislands will see the drive for change pulled back to the community level, giving islands and regional communities a real chance to take control of their own futures.

“The summit is not about talk and targets, it’s about communities uniting on a meaningful journey to sustainability and accessing the resources and knowledge to turn that vision into reality,” David Green said.

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