The European Commission said on June 19 that €45 million from the Cohesion Fund is invested to upscale the production of electricity from water and wind on the Atlantic island of Madeira, an autonomous region 1,000 kilometres from mainland Portugal and one of the EU’s nine Outermost regions.

According to the Commission, the project further improves the stability of electricity supply on the island, which is located off the northwest coast of Africa.

“I am proud to see what a difference Cohesion Policy investments can make to citizens in Europe’s outermost regions,” Regional Policy Commissioner Corina Crețu said, adding that the new, highly innovative and sustainable power station will help Madeira reduce its greenhouse gas emissions as well as its dependence on fossil fuels. “This is good news for the environment and the local economy at the same time.:

According to the Commission, the upgrade of an existing hydropower plant will triple production capacity to more than 38 megawatts. In addition, a new 17.7 megawatt pump storage facility together with a 1 million cubic metre water storage dam will make it possible to store created wind energy when there is an excess in supply, so additional electricity can be provided during periods of high demand.

The new installations will benefit 130 000 consumers, roughly half of Madeira’s inhabitants, the Commission said.

When presenting its proposals for the future Cohesion Policy on May 29, the Commission had also proposed to further increase the contribution of Cohesion Policy investments to climate action in the next budgetary period.