European Funding 2021-2027: Make use of all the possibilities for a green transition in the South Aegean


The opportunity that the South Aegean Region has to further strengthen the green transition of its economy was jointly emphasized by the Green Tank and Cyclades Preservation Fund (CPF), participating in a video conference on the South Aegean Regional Program Plan 2021-2027, successfully organized by the South Aegean Region’s Managing Authority, under the coordination of the South Aegean Regional Governor.

The key to achieve this transition smoothly and successfully is the horizontal integration of the environmental dimension in all axes of the Program, which, however, is not clearly reflected in its priorities and actions, at least in the plan that has been published to date.

With their intervention, which is reflected in a commentary text [in Greek], submitted in the context of the digital consultation also organized by the Managing Authority, additional possibilities for funding actions are highlighted, focusing on:

  • the diversification of the productive model of the South Aegean Region islands with the green transition as the central axis
  • sustainable tourism
  • the protection and restoration of biodiversity
  • clean energy, and
  • adaptation to climate change and risk prevention

It is noted that in June 2021, as part of a project co-financed by the Cyclades Preservation Fund (CPF), the Ionian Environment Foundation and the Captain Vassilis and Carmen Konstantakopoulos Foundation, Green Tank presented a detailed report titled “Financing opportunities for a sustainable future during the 2021-2027 period” [in Greek], in which the financing opportunities available to the country and its Regions are identified and highlighted, in order for actions that can combine the achievement of environmental and climate goals with the sustainable development to be implemented in the coming years. The report has been sent to the South Aegean Region, as part of a previous consultation phase, during the planning of the Program.

The new programming period coincides with the most critical decade for humanity due to the evolving crisis in climate and biodiversity. Following the European Green Deal, the available European resources are more and more oriented towards the green transition than in any previous period. The South Aegean Region must seize the opportunity to direct resources in a way that will proceed with the green transformation of important sectors of its economy“, said Ioli Christopoulou, Policy Director of the environmental think tank, The Green Tank.

With active steps over the past four years in the Cyclades, as the Cyclades Preservation Fund (CPF) we have identified the potential of many actors, mainly non-governmental organizations or other collectivities, to contribute to the green transition of the Region. They are actors that have the knowledge in their field of action, and with the appropriate support, they can, as potential beneficiaries of European resources, cooperate with the rest of the institutions and make a positive impact on the islands. The new Program gives the opportunity to multiply and strengthen positive, dynamic initiatives, leading the diversification of the local economy that the place so much needs” said Annie Mitropoulou, Executive Director of the Cyclades Preservation Fund.