The European Union’s LIFE Programme is the main funding instrument to support, update and develop European Community environmental policies and regulations, particularly with respect to: the incorporation of environmental issues in other policies; the sustainable development of the European Community; and the search for new solutions to environmental problems at European scale, through demonstration projects.
The LIFE Programme began in 1992 and was developed in three phases: LIFE I (1992-1995), LIFE II (1996-1999) and LIFE III (2000-2006). During this period, LIFE jointly funded 3,104 projects in total and the EU contributed approximately 2.2 billion euros to environmental protection. This LIFE+ Programme project corresponds to the 2007-2013 funding period, which had a budget of 2.143 billion euros.
Themes of the LIFE+ Programme:
- LIFE+ Nature and Biodiversity (Birds and Habitats Directives and the Communication ‘Halting the loss of biodiversity by 2010 – and beyond’).
- LIFE+ Environment Policy and Governance.
- LIFE+ Information and Communication.
The current phase of the LIFE programme (2014-2020) has a budget of 3.4 billion euros, and addresses three priority areas: environment and resource efficiency, nature and biodiversity, and governance and information. It will contribute to sustainable development and the attainment of the objectives and goals of the Europe 2020 strategy, the 7th Environment Action Programme, and other relevant strategies and plans on the environment and climate.