“3rd International Conference on Cyprus Issue: Environmental Challenges and Security, ECES 2022” will be held online on 21-23 December

About the Conference:

For a long period, the development of human civilization and industry was supported by fossil energy. However, this led to many significant challenges in terms of energy supply, environmental pollution, resource allocation, and efficiency. The achievement of sustainable economic development under strict constraints of limited resources and environmental protection has become one of the most important topics in the world. The energy sector is by default cyclical and history provides abundant examples of market expansion followed by sudden and painful contraction. Unfortunately, the current crisis differs from previous such episodes in several important respects. This is due to the fact that the recent surge in energy prices offers a glimpse of a future, where a transition to a low-carbon economy that is not properly managed or stress-tested against scarcity and volatility might produce recurrent market crunches and hinder the decarbonization trajectory.

Generally speaking, the Eastern Mediterranean region is considered a rich region in oil and natural gas since the late twentieth century. According to the US Geological Survey in 2010, the amount of oil and natural gas is estimated to be 3,455 billion m3 of gas and 1.7 billion barrels of oil in the Eastern Mediterranean region. Moreover, this region represents the most prominent transit point for oil and natural gas from the Middle East to the European Union as it overlooks three continents. These energy sources will help the regional countries to reduce the energy crisis by feeding power plants, heavy industries, and transportation. For example, in 2015, Egypt discovered the largest gas reserves in the Eastern Mediterranean in the Zohr field, which used to meet domestic consumption and generate 85% of the country's electricity.

Furthermore, the Mediterranean region is strongly exposed to climate change and faces fast-rising temperatures, water scarcity, and coastal erosion. Energy transition plays a vital role in climate change mitigation on both shores of the Mediterranean. Blessed with great renewable energy potential, the region has attracted growing attention from the public and private stakeholders. The planned subsea power link between the countries illustrates the increased interest in investing in green energy to stabilize energy prices and increase supply security. Presently, the COVID-19 pandemic and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine have seen energy costs soar for millions and a renewed concern about energy security.

This conference provides an overview of critical aspects related to the energy security challenges in the Eastern Mediterranean and the interrelationship between the political economy of energy security and national security along with the role of North Cyprus in this equilibrium. In this conference, contemporary energy issues concerning energy security are examined, along with the main vulnerabilities and challenges that have appeared lately with an impact beyond country borders and with a particular focus on the Eastern Mediterranean region and Cyprus. Furthermore, the political and policy implications of these developments and the role of North Cyprus in this course of action will be also discussed. Besides, the relationship between climate change and energy scarcity along with the alternative solutions for reducing the effect of climate change and solving the energy scarcity in the Eastern Mediterranean region is also analyzed. As a result, this conference is expected to contribute to the existing literature and provide an in-depth study that gives a fresh approach to the academic and political community.

Honorary President of the Conference

Prof. Dr. İrfan Suat Günsel - Chairman, Board of Trustees, Near East University

President of the Conference

Prof. Dr. Hüseyin Gökçekuş - Professor of Water and Environmental Engineering, Dean, Faculty of Civil and Environmental Engineering Near East University, Board Chairman of Energy, Environment, and Water Research Center (ENÇESU)

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