LIFE Call2020 in a nutshell

LIFE Call2020 in a nutshell

Do you know what the LIFE Program is?

LIFE is a program introduced by the European Union in 1992, with which projects on environmental issues proposed by member countries are co-financed. The aim is to provide specific support for the development and implementation of Community environmental policy and legislation, in particular pursuing the objectives of the seventh Community environment action program. Funded projects can be proposed by operators, bodies or public and private institutions.

The LIFE program provides for the presentation of projects related to the Environment and Climate sub-programs. Through the calls that are proposed annually by the European Commission, it is possible to present projects, which are intended to be financed, related to LIFE sub-programs.

We have summarized the main information, news and deadlines for the presentation of the projects.


Traditional LIFE Projects are divided as follows:

- Pilot projects: projects that apply a technique or method that has never been applied and tested before, that offer potential benefits for the environment or climate compared to current best practices and that can be applied later on a larger scale in similar situations;

- Demonstration projects: projects that implement, test, evaluate and disseminate new or unknown actions/methodologies/approaches in the specific context of the project (e.g. geographic, ecological or socio-economic) and which could be applied elsewhere;

- Good practice projects: projects that apply adequate, efficient and advanced techniques / methods / approaches, taking into account the context;

- Information, awareness and dissemination projects: projects to support the communication, dissemination and awareness of information within the two sub-programs.



Environment sub-program (3 calls):

  • Nature and Biodiversity
  • Environment and resource efficiency
  • Enviromental governance and information

EU GRANTS: up to 60% of the eligible costs and, in the case of projects on priority habitats or species, up to 75%.

The presentation of the project proposals develops in two phases:

  • PHASE 1: Presentation of a Concept Note
  • PHASE 2: Presentation of the Full Proposal

IMPORTANT: for Nature and biodiversity projects, at least 25% of a project's budget must be dedicated to specific conservation actions.


Nature and Biodiversity

Funded projects: good practices, pilot projects and demonstration projects that help to implement the European directives on birds, habitats and the European 2020 strategy on biodiversity, as well as the development, implementation and management of the Natura2000 network.

Traditional projects on nature and biodiversity: in this area, projects should contribute to the development and application of EU policy and legislation in the fields of nature or biodiversity, to support and further development, application and management of the network Natura 2000 and the improvement of the knowledge base for the implementation and management of EU nature and biodiversity policy and legislation.

(2 Phases/ Grants between 60 and 75% / Deadline: July 16, 2020)


Environment and resource efficiency

Funded projects: pilot and demonstration projects to develop, test and demonstrate management policies or approaches. Also the development and demonstration of innovative technologies, the implementation, monitoring and evaluation of EU environmental policy and legislation, best practices and solutions.

Thematic priorities: Air, chemicals, soil management, circular economy and green economy (forests), industrial accidents, maritime management, noise, soil, water, waste and urban environment.

(2 Phases / Grants up to 55% / Deadline: July 14, 2020)


Enviromental governance and information

Funded projects: information, awareness and dissemination projects whose aim is to promote awareness of environmental issues, including cooperation platforms and the exchange of knowledge on sustainable environmental solutions and practices.

Priorities of traditional governance and environmental information projects:

a) information, communication and awareness campaigns;

b) activities in support of an effective monitoring process of EU environmental legislation, as well as activities in support of information systems and tools related to the implementation of EU environmental legislation.

The call finances information, awareness and dissemination projects to raise awareness of environmental issues and promote knowledge of sustainable development and new models of sustainable consumption, or to support communication, management and dissemination of environmental information and facilitate exchange of knowledge on solutions and environmental practices, inter alia through the development of cooperation with stakeholders and training platforms;

(2 Phases / Grants up to 55% / Deadline July 16, 2020)



Climate action sub-program (3 calls):

  • Mitigation of climate change
  • Climate change adaptation
  • Climate governance and information

In pilot and demonstration projects, the European Commission is looking for technologies and solutions ready to be implemented in near market conditions, on an industrial or commercial scale, for the duration of the project

The EU contribution can generally cover up to 55%


Mitigation of climate change

Funded projects: good practices, pilot and demonstration projects that contribute to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, to the implementation and development of EU policy and legislation, best practices and solutions (renewable energy, energy efficiency, agriculture, land use and peat management).

(1 Phase/ Grants up to 55% / Deadline October 6, 2020)


Climate change adaptation

Funded projects: best practices, pilot and demonstration projects that contribute to increasing resilience to climate change. It also promotes the development and implementation of the EU adaptation policy, best practices and solutions, including ecosystem-based approaches and knowledge sharing (resilience to water scarcity, drought, forest fires or floods, adaptive technologies by economic sectors and protection of natural resources).

(1 Phase/ Grants up to 55% / Deadline October 6, 2020)


Climate governance and information

Funded projects: information, awareness and dissemination on climate issues, including public and stakeholder support for EU policy making, support for communication, management and dissemination of information to facilitate knowledge sharing and cooperation platforms.

(1 Phase/ Grants up to 55% / Deadline October 6, 2020)



  • Projects are promoted that propose ideas and tools to prevent or deal with emergency situations linked to human health and that have a link with the environment and the climate;
  • Private entities are no longer obliged to submit public contracts above € 135,000;
  • A special section for the newly created startup has been introduced. Newly created start-ups can be coordinators, in association with established companies;
  • All projects will be able to financially support local initiatives (which can contribute to the project goal), in the form of grants that the beneficiary partner can award to (third-party) entities that are not eligible as project partners.