The European Commission said on June 1 that for the next long-term EU budget 2021-2027, the Commission would propose increasing its funding by almost 60% for LIFE, the EU programme for the environment and climate action.

EU Environment Commissioner Karmenu Vella said the EU is the global leader for environmental protection and climate action, adding, “Where we spend our money should reflect this. With more funding, we can strengthen the LIFE programme to ensure that it can effectively contribute to protecting our environment and speeding up the transition to a clean, energy-efficient, low-carbon and climate-resilient economy – a priority of the Juncker Commission,” Vella said.

Climate Action and Energy Commissioner Miguel Arias Cañete added that a stronger LIFE programme will play an important role in expanding investments in climate action and clean energy across Europe. “By continuing to support climate change mitigation and adaptation, LIFE will also continue to help the EU deliver on its climate goals and commitments under the Paris Agreement and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals,” Cañete said.

According to the Commission, the LIFE programme is among the EU funding programmes for which the Commission is proposing the largest proportional increase, with a budget of €1.95 billion between 2021 and 2027. The Commission has integrated climate action into all major EU spending programmes, in particular, its cohesion policy, regional development, energy, transport, research and innovation, the Common Agricultural Policy and the EU’s development policy, making the budget a driver of sustainability.

To implement the Paris Agreement and the commitment to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, the Commission proposes to raise the level of ambition for climate financing across all EU programmes, with at least 25% of EU expenditure contributing to climate objectives.