EU invests over €100m in projects aimed at combatting climate change
Ten major environment and climate initiatives in nine Member States will be supportedEuropost
The Commission announced on Monday funding of €101.2m under the EU's LIFE programme to support 10 major environment and climate projects in nine Member States. The projects, which are aimed at boosting Europe's transition to a sustainable economy and climate neutrality, are located in Cyprus, Estonia, France, Greece, Ireland, Latvia, Slovakia, The Czech Republic and Spain.
“LIFE integrated projects enable Member States' authorities to make a real difference to the environment and people's lives. The projects will help Member States to conserve nature, improve air and water quality, and make the economy greener. This will improve our resilience to the changing climate,” Environment Commissioner Virginijus Sinkevicius said. “The European Green Deal is about improving the well-being and prosperity of our citizens, while protecting nature and the climate. LIFE projects have played an important role for many years and have a big impact on the ground,” Executive VP Frans Timmermans added.
Integrated projects are designed to improve citizens' quality of life by helping Member States comply with EU legislation in six areas: nature, water, air, waste, climate change mitigation and climate change adaptation. They support implementation of environmental and climate legislation in a coordinated manner and on a large territorial scale, leveraging funding from other EU sources, national and regional actors and private investors.
The projects are targetting nature conservation, waste management, air and water quality, and climate change adaptation. Integrated projects in Estonia, Ireland and Cyprus will help to conserve Europe's nature and improve the management of the EU Natura 2000 network of protected areas. A project in Greece will promote waste prevention and re-use, reducing the amount of municipal waste going to landfill.
LIFE funding will assist Slovakia in complying with EU directives on air quality, reducing the population's exposure to harmful air pollutants. Neighbouring Czech Republic, affected by similar air quality problems, will also benefit. Integrated projects working at river basin-scale will protect and improve water quality in Ireland and Latvia's rivers and lakes, enabling the countries to meet their obligations under the EU Water Framework Directive.
Funding under LIFE programme will also support increased resilience to climate change. Projects will integrate climate change adaptation into planning and other policy areas in Spain as well as building adaptation capacity in France using nature-based solutions. Also in France, an integrated project will help bridge significant knowledge gaps in this area and bring green financial products into the mainstream.
Furthermore, the LIFE investment is set to mobilise over €6.5bn of complementary funds, as Member States can also make use of other EU funding sources, including agricultural, regional and structural funds, Horizon 2020, as well as national funds and private sector investment. The large-scale projects will support the European Green Deal and the EU's ambition of becoming the world's first climate-neutral continent by 2050. They will help to restore and conserve ecosystems and species we all depend on, move towards a circular economy, improve air and water quality, boost sustainable finance and increase climate resilience in Europe.