Ireland’s Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government, Phil Hogan TD, has today welcomed the agreement reached with the European Parliament’s chief negotiator on the proposal for a new LIFE Programm. LIFE is the main EU funding mechanism for projects in the area of the environment. Priorities under the new Programme include nature and biodiversity, resource efficiency, and new provisions for climate change mitigation and adaptation.
The new Programme will replace the existing Programme which expires at the end of 2013. This agreement will be recommended to the respective institutions. Pending formal agreement on the EU’s budget for the next seven years, more than €3bn will be provided to support environmental projects in the period 2014-2020.
In welcoming the agreement, Minister Hogan said:
“I know that Member States, the European Parliament and the Commission have worked hard to reach agreement on this important file. The provision of more than €3bn for the period 2014 – 2020 is a very positive result for the development and implementation of environment policy and will help promote investment in the green economy both in Ireland and across Europe.”
The new Programme will provide clearer definition of priority areas and provides for the adoption of multi-annual work programmes. The new sub-programme for climate action will support efforts for better implementation and integration of climate-related objectives.
The sub-programme for environment will support efforts for better implementation and integration of environmental objectives in the areas of Resource Efficiency, Nature & Biodiversity and Environmental Governance & Information.
The agreement also introduces an innovative project type – "Integrated projects" – which aims to harness other EU, national and private funds to implement large-scale environmental and climate strategies or action plans. These will focus primarily on the nature, water, waste, air, and climate change mitigation and adaptation sectors.
Minister Hogan noted that the Irish Presidency led strongly in the intensive discussions on this dossier leading to today’s agreement. He also acknowledged the considerable work undertaken by the preceding Cypriot Presidency.
Today’s agreement now goes to Coreper for approval.