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“The Observer”: Hidden Greece

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)   In the last few decades Greece has assumed its rightful place among the top tourist destinations in the world. Mass tourism has flourished and places like Crete, Rhodes, Corfu, Zante have become synonyms of “two weeks of fun in the sun,” attracting thousands of tourists every summer. Yet there are still places not frequently visited or barely known to the majority of prospective tourists.  British newspaper “The Observer” has assembled a panel of experts and persuaded them to reveal their personal favourites in a long article titled “Greece: the inside track,” where readers may find out about little-known islands – such as Kythnos, Milos, Kastellorizo (Megisti), Ikaria and Antipaxoi – as well as special places to stay such as the fishermen’s boat houses on Alonissos, where to stay, and what to visit.  

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Greece: Life is longer in… Ikaria

(GREECE NEWS AGENDA)  People on the Greek island of Ikaria live longer than in just about any other place in the world.    A recent study of 90-year-old siblings, conducted by the National Hellenic Research Foundation, discovered 10 times more 90-year-old brothers and sisters there than the European average.   “Do these people possess the true secret to longevity? We’re not sure yet, but we’ll certainly distil a few clues about living longer, better”, writes Dan Buettner in his commentary for the CNN,  while “The Blue Zones” expedition he’s leading – a team of the world’s best demographers, physicians, medical researchers and media specialists- explores Ikarian longevity.  See also: The Daily Express – The Secrets of Eternity Island

Environment Matters in Greece: First Hydroelectric Power Grid

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)          The island of Ikaria will soon be opting out of the national power grid, as it will become autonomous in terms of energy consumption. The foundation of the first hybrid system in Greece, which will combine hydroelectric and aeolian (wind) modes of energy production, is being laid on October 25. A hydroelectric station will be built that will utilise waterfall from three different levels. The water will begin from an existing dam in the area of Pezi on the island, located at a height of 700 metres. In Pezi, there is a natural plateau. A rain storm is enough to fill up the natural reservoir in the plateau. The water will then be collected in three separate cisterns that will be built, at different levels, thus creating artificial cataracts. These cataracts will produce electric energy, capable of covering 85-90% of the islands requirements. The barrages will each have a capacity of 80,000 cubic metres of water. Deputy Minister of Merchant Marine Panayiotis Kammenos will inaugurate the energy plant tomorrow.  Centre for Renewable Energy Resources: Hydroelectric Energy; Secretariat General of Information: About Brand Greece – Environmental Strategic Policies  & Energy Policy; Public Power Corporation: www.dei.gr; Ministry of Environment, Physical Planning and Public Works: Climate Change; Greek Association of RES (Renewable Energy Sources) Electricity Producers: www.hellas.gr