The European Commission has approved an investment package of €243 million from the EU budget for projects under the LIFE programme supporting nature, the environment and quality of life in Europe’s transition to a more sustainable and low-carbon future.
The EU funding under the LIFE programme for the Environment and Climate Action will mobilise additional investments leading to a total of €430.7 million going towards 142 new projects. With numerous trans-national projects funded, LIFE will have an impact in every EU Member State.
Tackling the biggest challenges
Funds of €196.2 million will go to projects in the field of environment and resource efficiency, nature and biodiversity, and environmental governance and information.
This includes major investments in projects that will enable more plastic to be reused. Turning this waste into high-quality raw materials for the car, construction and packaging industries is just one way in which LIFE gives practical support to achieving the goals of the European Commission’s European Strategy for Plastics in a Circular Economy.
LIFE remains at the forefront of efforts to increase awareness of the valuable ecosystem services that nature provides and to conserve endangered habitats and species. From reducing conflicts between people and wildlife in Greece, Italy, Romania and Spain, to promoting sustainable agricultural practices in Italy, Malta and Spain, the many LIFE nature project will help to implement the EU Action Plan for Nature.
In the area of climate action, the EU will invest €46.8 million to support climate change mitigation, adaptation and governance and information projects. This includes practical support for Member States drafting their 2030 national climate and energy plans that will help them collectively reduce greenhouse gas emissions by at least 40% by 2030 compared to 1990 levels. LIFE funding will also help farming and forestry adapt to climate change and improve communities’ resilience to extreme weather events, from floods and heatwaves to water shortages.
- 55 LIFE environment & resource efficiency projects will mobilise €163.5 million, of which the EU will provide €82.4 million. These projects cover actions in five thematic areas: air, environment and health, resource efficiency, waste, and water. The 20 resource efficiency projects alone will mobilise €43.8 million to help in Europe’s transition to a more circular economy, a 15% increase on last year. Some €14.9 million will help improve air quality in Europe.
40 LIFE nature & biodiversity projects support the implementation of the EU Birds and Habitats Directives and the EU Biodiversity Strategy to 2020. They have a total budget of €153 million, of which the EU will contribute €97.5 million.
- 15 LIFE environmental governance and information projects will raise awareness on environmental matters. They have a total budget of €27.2 million, of which the EU will contribute €16.2 million.
11 LIFE climate change mitigation projects have a total budget of €33.7 million, of which the EU will contribute €18.6 million. These action grants are awarded to best practice, pilot and demonstration projects in three thematic areas: industry, greenhouse gas accounting/reporting, and land use, forestry and agriculture.
- 17 LIFE climate change adaptation projects will mobilise €44.2 million, of which the EU will provide €22.9 million. These action grants are awarded to projects in six thematic areas: ecosystem-based adaptation, health and wellbeing, mountain/island areas adaptation focusing on the agriculture sector, urban adaptation/planning, vulnerability assessments/adaptation strategies, and water (including flood management, coastal areas and desertification).
- 4 LIFE climate governance and information projects will improve governance and raise awareness of climate change. They have a total budget of €9.1 million, of which the EU will contribute €5.2 million.