The government aims to bring liquefied natural gas (LNG) to Cyprus by 2020 for cheaper and cleaner energy, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Energy Stelios Himonas said on Friday.
Speaking at a press conference in Limassol, on LNG, Himonas said that studies carried out under two programmes will contribute to the realization of the country’s energy goals and the arrival of natural gas in Cyprus.
The arrival of LNG will result in the diversification of Cyprus’ energy mix, the elimination of the island’s energy isolation, the security of its energy supply and the use of cleaner energy sources.
This development, he said, along with initiatives taken to introduce Renewable Energy Sources, “will help us meet our environmental goals and obligations towards the EU”.
Himonas also said that natural gas is a prerequisite for the liberalisation of the electricity market, adding that conducting these studies marks the beginning of the implementation of the latest decision by the cabinet regarding the arrival of LNG. Storage of LNG, he added, is an integral part of the solution Cyprus is seeking in this respect.
The ministry official expressed the hope that the quantities of hydrocarbons off Cyprus will justify the construction of a liquefaction plant in Vasiliko and explained that once Cyprus produces its own natural gas, there will be discussion on how best to utilise this.
In his turn, Minister of Transport Marios Demetriades said that projects such as the supply of LNG for ships could help to develop Cyprus’ ports, stressing the importance his ministry attaches to this.
“We have now gone into the era of reducing pollutants and shipping is currently the main means of transport around the world,” Demetriades said. He added that shipping today produces around 3per cent of global greenhouse gas emissions and around 4per cent within the EU, while ambitious targets have been set by Europe for 2020, which Cyprus must meet.
Everything points to the use of more environmentally-friendly forms of fuel and that is why the two programmes carried out in cooperation with the ministry of energy are very important, he said.
The conference is co-organized by two major projects co-funded by the European Union, POSEIDON MED II and CYnergy. Delegates to the conference had a fruitful dialogue on the latest trends and developments regarding the adoption of LNG as an alternative fuel, focusing on the important role of Cyprus in the wider region of the Eastern Mediterranean.