The main field of EILST’s actions is the environmental dimension with the purpose to assist in adapting to climate change and transition towards a green economy and a sustainable way of living through the promotion of technological innovations and breakthroughs. Under this mandate, ELST undertakes a wide range of projects and initiatives, like in the field of sustainable agriculture, where it promotes projects on technological innovation, e.g. (a) the use of drones for identification of maturity of crops, (b) the use of technical indicators for the measurement of humidity in order to minimize the use of water in agriculture. Indicatively, in the waste management aspect, EILST assisted the Municipality of Ancient Olympia, Greece, to successfully join an EU Project on Innovative Waste Management and LIFE+ EU Project, along with the Island of Naxos in 2015. The institute’s actions in supporting the adaptation process to climate change are closely related to the response and preparedness against environmental disasters. For instance, the EILST played a research and coordination role after the mega-fires in Greece in 2007, assisted other NGOs after the earthquake in Haiti, while its delegation visited Haifa after the fire in 2010. Even recently, following the unspeakable tragedy that occurred in Mandra, in Western Attica, Greece, in 2017, the EILST filed a memorandum in regards to the recent floods in the area and the way forward in the prevention, protection, preparedness and recovery from floods both from a governmental and technical point of view.
In regards to the marine biodiversity protection, EILST has supported the establishment of MPAs (marine protected areas) in the Mediterranean Sea. EILST has worked along with Mr. Pierre Yves Cousteau, Founder of Cousteau Divers, by organizing a public presentation of his work and project in cooperation with Prof. Simopoulos, Prof. of Astrophysics, and the Planetarium in Athens, Greece. EILST has also worked with Mr. Eric Salas, a National Geographic Oceanographer and a Young Global Leader of the World Economic Forum, in order to translate and present a film produced by National Geographic featuring Mr. Salas about the protection of marine environment in the Greek public.
In relations to the water protection and management, EILST has played a vital role in the legal qualification of ship repair waste as ship generated waste by issuing an advisory note. This legal qualification raised the need to harmonize national legislation and supported that ship repair waste fall under the regulatory framework of Protocol V of the MARPOL 73/78. In addition, the institute participated in many Davos related events, where its experts had the chance to raise awareness and demand a significant increase for funding water infrastructure.
Working as a platform for dialogue among legal experts, natural scientists, innovators, Governments and the business community, the EILST has promoted several technological innovations and advances that satisfy the three pillars of the sustainable development and help the transition towards it, as is the case for environmentally-friendly technologies, such as the technologies to carbon capture and re-use enabling the monetization of local gas sources and the utilization of waste carbon faced with the increased levels of CO2.
Environment, Climate and Renewable Energy Initiatives for CYCLADES
EILST comprises of a large series of initiatives and is being supported by a variety of researchers, consultants and thought leaders. Many of the current projects that we develop or promote could have place among the roadmap of sustainable development of Cyclades, such as;
- a pilot project on desalination;
- a pilot project on smart grids for alternative resources of energy on the Greek islands;
- a CO Conversion into energy pilot project;
- a biowaste to energy project;
- a waste water depollution project and
- a project to combat coastal erosion.
Some of the past and current projects and initiatives on the Island of Cyclades that EILST has undertaken or supported, thus far, include:
- The support of the establishment of a Specially Protected Areas, especially for Santorini and Paros/Antiparos. EILST has worked along with Pierre Yves Cousteau, Founder of Cousteau Divers, by organizing a public presentation of his work and project in cooperation with Prof. Simopoulo, Prof. of Astrophysics, and the Planetarium in Athens, Greece. EILST has also worked with Mr. Eric Salas, a
National Geographic Oceanographer and a Young Global Leader of the World Economic Forum, in order to translate and present a film produced by Mr. Salas and Cousteau on the protection of marine environment in the Greek public.
- EILST is working closely with the Circle of the Mediterranean Parliamentarians on Sustainable Development for the protection of the Mediterranean Sea, including issues of Integrate Water Resources Management (IWCM), sustainable agriculture, and the restauration/depletion of beaches after coastal erosion has occurred. Cyclades islands and Western Peloponnese were in the center of this
- EILST has supported the efforts of the Global Water Partnership- Mediterranean in order to develop a network of water sinks on the Cyclades gathering and purifying rain water. They use not only new sinks but they restore traditional and historic sinks, such as the ones that originate from the Roman
- EILST consulted members of the Board of the Municipality of Milos Island, Cyclades, Greece, regarding Vipera Schweizerei, a protected species that is unique on this
- EILST has served as a consultant to the Mayor of the Municipality of Andros, Cyclades, Greece, regarding the sustainable development of the island, especially regarding sustainable transportation, waste water management, and cultural heritage and biodiversity preservation. In 2015, EILST assisted the Municipality of Ancient Olympia, Greece, to successfully join an EU Project on Innovative Waste Management and LIFE+ EU Project, along with the Island of Andros.
- Every second year, EILST assists the Euro-American Women’s Council in organizing a cultural, tourism and environment event on Mykonos.