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Ponta Delgada ,  December 12, 2011

Azores Global project defines research and development strategy of the Azores

The Government of the Azores, through the Regional Secretariat for Science, Technology and Infrastructures, is completing the first phase of the Global Azores project. The document defines the research and development strategy for coming years under the so-called 20-20 Agenda, a European digital agenda which provides new challenges and funds to project and increase research and development in European regions.

During the seminar on Grids of the Future Challenges for Macaronesia, which is taking place in Ponta Delgada on Monday and Tuesday, José Contente considered positive the connection and synergies established between the Azores, Madeira and the Canary Islands because it constitutes a cluster founded on knowledge, research , innovation and exchange of experiences that may bring tangible results for people.

At the opening session of the event, the Regional Secretary for Science, Technology and Infrastructures said that "the archipelagos are biogeographically similar and we have the necessary intelligence that should be put at the service of our Regions."

The MaRes project - Macaronesia Research Strategy defines some of the research and development areas for each region: sea and space technology for the Canary Islands, information and communication technologies for Madeira and energy for the Azores. Nevertheless, each region may develop initiatives in other areas, such as the case of the Azores that has given special emphasis to space technology.

"With the space cluster we want to succeed with the ESA station on Santa Maria, where several important projects are being developed, such as the North Atlantic Maritime Surveillance Centre, which projects our centrality at a regional and national level. With these structural projects, we are no longer considered Outermost Regions; we are rather a platform for exchanging and sharing knowledge and experiences that should contribute to the improvement of the populations' living conditions in the future," stressed the Regional Secretary.
 
With regard to Smart Grids, the Regional Government is developing the Green Islands project, which represents an important investment in renewable energies. The government official presented an innovative project in this area, particularly in public road lighting. "We are currently discussing the potential use of kinetic energy from cars. This energy, with the appropriate infrastructures, can be used for  public  road lighting, without costs and use of fossil fuels," said José Contente, adding that, apart this project, there is a series of projects in the field of science and technology that aim to ensure the Region's self-sustainability.

José Contente recalled that the Azores, Madeira and the Canary Islands have the largest exclusive economic zone, saying that "this brings increased responsibility" in defending these spaces as well as the natural and genetic heritage, which the Region is already doing. "If many people covet them, it is because of their richness. This means that our regions could be wealthier with these mineral resources."


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Official government press-releases presented in all foreign languages interfaces of the Azorean Government Portal (Portal do Governo dos Açores) are a sub-set of the government's official press-releases daily output and are chosen for translation and publication on the foreign language interfaces based on audience segmentation criteria. The entire collection of the Azorean government press-releases is available in portuguese, here, from the GACS Press Office site.

 
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