Since the 2010s, the discovery of offshore hydrocarbons in the Eastern Mediterranean has been viewed as holding the potential to significantly alter regional geopolitical dynamics and become an area of cooperation. Yet instead, hydrocarbons have generated further tensions over maritime boundaries and exploration rights. A new reality is emerging now, as the transformation of energy systems away from fossil fuel-reliance picks up pace. In particular, the European Union goal of climate neutrality is likely to speed up the renewables-led energy transition, which can present a significant opportunity for cooperation in the region. This report critically analyses possibilities for a solution to the Cyprus Problem within this new paradigm, where energy and sustainability goals might offer an avenue to cooperation. It argues that the EU pledge on sustainability offers new prospects for easing political tensions and creating opportunities for intercommunal cooperation in Cyprus. Yet there are political risks involved, too, which must be carefully analysed and avoided where possible.
Eminel Sülün, Emine (2022) Energy Transition Geopolitics in the Eastern Mediterranean and Prospects for a Green Energy Dialogue in Divided Cyprus. Re-imagining the Eastern Mediterranean Series: PCC Report: 6. Nicosia: PRIO Cyprus Centre.