European Commission’s LIFE programme

The LIFE programme was launched in 1992 and has jointly financed more than 5,400 projects to date. Until 2013, the LIFE programme had contributed to the protection of the environment, to the amount of 3.1 billion Euros. Funding over the period 2014 to 2020 represented a budget of 3.4 billion Euros.

LIFE programme 2014-2020 was divided into two sub-programmes:

  • one for the environment (representing 75% of the overall financial budget)
  • the other for climate action (representing 25% of the budget).

For the new period from 2021 to 2027, the European Commission proposes to increase the LIFE programme budget to 5.4 billion Euros. The new LIFE programme includes four sub-programmes:

  • nature and biodiversity;
  • circular economy and quality of life;
  • climate change mitigation and adaptation;
  • clean energy transition.

LIFE strategic integrated projects

The strategic integrated projects aim to fully implement the strategies or action plans required by European environment and climate law. They are implemented at national or regional scale, involving relevant authorities and highly substantial budgets. They cover a 6 to 10-year period on average.

As part of the environment sub-programme, these large scale projects implement plans, strategies or roadmaps in nature (including the Natura 2000 network management), water, waste and air. As part of the climate action sub-programme, these projects cover climate change mitigation and adaptation.

The projects receive co-funding of up to 60%, with an average LIFE subsidy of 10 million Euros per project.