The most ambitious environmental and climate programme of the European Union, the 2021-2027 programme for Environment and Climate Action (LIFE), has been approved by the European Parliament on 6 May. The programme stands out as the only such programme completely dedicated on the environment and the climate and will enter into force retroactively from 1 January 2021. In 2018, The European Commission proposed to establish a Programme for the Environment and Climate Action for the next period of the Multiannual Financial Framework that spans from 2021 to 2027.
Under the deal, LIFE funding will increase to €5.4 billion. This is 60% more than the previous period. €3.5 billion will go to environmental projects and the remaining €1.9 billion will be allocated to those on climate action.
Commenting on the announcement, Virginijus Sinkevičius, European Commissioner for Environment, Oceans and Fisheries said: "For almost 30 years, LIFE projects have been an inspiration to citizens, public bodies, industry and NGOs. Each LIFE project means concrete action on the ground, resulting in more biodiversity, less pollution, more climate action and cleaner energy. We all look forward to seeing the continuation of this success story."
The file’s rapporteur Nils Torvalds of Renew Europe added: "The LIFE programme is the only EU programme for the environment. It brings citizens together to work for the climate and environment. This makes it different from normal EU programmes and adds to its legitimacy."
Jean-Claude Merciol, Head of LIFE Programme Unit at DG Environment of the European Commission and lead negotiator said: "It has been a long and highly constructive journey to reach this point. I would like to thank all the rapporteurs, both past and present, for their excellent work. This agreement is a balanced one which I very much welcome and I look forward to seeing LIFE’s continued positive impact on the ground."
A new look LIFE
LIFE is expanding into four new sub-programmes: nature and biodiversity, circular economy and quality of life, climate change mitigation and adaptation, and clean energy transition.
A 60% increase to €5.4 billion in the LIFE Programme, the only programme entirely dedicated on the protection of environment and climate, clearly shows the determination of the European Union in this area. With the European Green Deal, the EU and its Member States are decidedly set on the goal of becoming carbon-neutral by 2050 and increased support on programmes and initiatives on the preservation of nature will only help the EU reach its goal more quickly and decisively. ECOPNET (European Cooperation and Partnership Network) recognises the impacts of the climate change, supports the EU laws and initiatives in this regard, and continues to work with its partners of ensuring that the green transition is fair and beneficial for all through its Working Groups on Green Deal and Circular Economy.
Source: European Climate, Infrastructure and Environment Executive Agency Newsroom