The group of Egadi Islands is composed by three islands, two islets and a series of rocks and cliffs. The islands are located about 7 km far from the west coast of Sicily, belonging to the (Administrative) District of Trapani.
They were known in antiquity by the name that comes from the Latin “Aegates” and the greek “Aigatai”, namely ‘islands of the goats’. From geological point of view the Egadi are closely linked with Sicily; the archipelago, of 37,45 km², is formed by the islands of Favignana, Marettimo and Levanzo and several other smaller islets. The climate is mild in winter and warm and sunny in summer. The Municipality of Favignana consists of 4,225 inhabitants, and it includes the islands of Favignana, Marettimo and Levanzo and the smaller islands of Maraone and Formica.
The Islands income sources are mainly tourism and fishing. The islands received a big boost with the arrival of the family Florio in 1874, when they bought the whole archipelago from the Marquis of Genoa Pallavicino, and they developed several activities, among which tuna fishing and many others. The typical dishes of the Egadi include couscous and specialties related to fishing, such as marinated tuna, the broiled fish and fried tuna.
Thanks to the project "Sole e stelle delle Egadi" four different type of intervention were implemented: solar thermal and photovoltaic systems integrated in the architecture of the area and the landscape for public and private buildings; vegetable oils generators with engine power of approximately 100 kW; a sustainable mobility project including electric bicycles, electric scooters, columns and photovoltaic roofs for charging needs; intervention on public lighting which will replace the existing bulbs with new LED lamps without changing the morphology of the street lamps.
Whitin the project "Eco-innovazione Sicilia" in Favignana have already been installed: a pilot plant to compost organic urban waste and a cottage for the water distribution to the citizens with the aim of reducing the plastic bottles, which constitute a considerable waste to the island.
In collaboration with the Marine Protected Area it has also started a process of environmental certification aimed at safeguarding the environment and the creation of local brands of environmental quality for the main tourist activities of the place: accommodation, food, guided tours, dive centers, passenger transport, fishing, rental and leasing of ships, car, motorcycle and bike and mooring services.
Today the Egadi Islands, as other Italian islands, are not yet connected to the national grid by producing energy locally, mainly fossil. As part of the green Egadi 2015 projects will be installed new equipment at very high efficiency (LED) in the system of public lighting of Favignana and will be made charging stations for electric vehicles with photovoltaic roof. The administration has also chosen to invest a significant portion of the available resources to purchase electric vehicles to make more sustainable the municipal fleet and to build four new photovoltaic systems on many public facilities. Regarding the investments in the private sector we have chosen to encourage the private photovoltaic systems purchase.
The Municipality of Favignana and AzzeroCO2’s project "Sole e stelle delle Egadi” was funded by Italian Ministry of Environment through the call "Renewable sources, energy saving and sustainable mobility in the smaller islands". The objectives of the project are to encourage, within the territory of the three islands of Favignana, Levanzo and Marettimo, the deployment of renewable energy, efficient technologies and the promotion of sustainable mobility, leading to a reduction in 36% of CO2 emissions compared to the current level.
In 2015 the Italian Ministry of Environment granted the Municipality of Favignana to continue the project "Sole e stelle delle Egadi", in order to put new LED fixtures in the installation of public lighting and create the charging columns for electric vehicles with photovoltaic roof.
Another project funded in Egadi Islands is "Eco-innovazione Sicilia", which aimed at encouraging sustainable tourism. The need arises from the large influx of summer tourists, on an island that may host up to 60,000 people a day, in front of the usual 4,500 residents, which would be detrimental to the environment. These activities are part of the initiatives launched in the South of Italy by ENEA (National Agency for new technologies, energy and sustainable development) and they have been funded by the Finance Act 2010. The project involves the implementation of measures on the sustainable management of water resources, the cycle of waste and natural resources, including studies on the quality of marine and coastal environment.