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Representation in Ireland
News article22 February 2024Representation in Ireland3 min read

Two Irish environmental projects awarded over €35 million in EU LIFE funding

The Commission announced this week that it is investing over €233 million in 12 new Strategic Projects across Europe under the LIFE programme to support the implementation of the EU's environmental and climate ambitions under the European Green Deal.

Image with drawings of a man and woman against a background of trees, plants and water with a windmill in the background and text: Life Strategic Projects Preserving #OurPlanet for future generations

Two of the twelve projects are Irish:

  • MPA-LIFE-IRELAND, which will receive over €15 million in Life funding, aims to designate at least 30% of Ireland's marine territories as Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) by 2030.
  • LIFE SNAP Ireland, which will receive over €20 million in Life funding, will target barriers to the implementation of Ireland's Natura 2000 priority action fund.

The coordinator for both projects is the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage.

Virginijus Sinkevičius, Commissioner for Environment, Oceans and Fisheries, said:

For over 30 years, LIFE projects have brought together passionate Europeans with pioneering ideas, and the funding needed to make these ideas a reality. Today’s investment will support more pioneers to achieve their goals. These projects are not just about reaching our environmental and climate objectives, they’re about empowering people to make changes that really matter.


More information

Twelve flagship projects awarded in ten EU Member States  

The funding awarded to these twelve Strategic Projects will support Bulgaria, Czechia, Ireland, Spain, France, Italy, Lithuania, Austria, Poland and Finland to reach their national environmental and climate targets as they ramp up their contributions to the EU's green transition.

On environment, the selected LIFE Strategic Nature Projects (SNAPs) and Strategic Integrated Projects (SIPs) will benefit marine ecosystems with plans to designate at least 30% of Ireland's marine territories as Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) by 2030 (MPA-LIFE-IRELAND). They will also improve air quality in the Podkarpackie region of Poland while reducing energy poverty and increasing energy efficiency (LIFE Podkarpackie); and improve water quality and management in Lithuania (LIFE SIP Vanduo).  

Six other projects have also been selected to boost nature and biodiversity. In Finland, Priodiversity LIFE aims to roll out regional biodiversity action plans as well as capacity building. In northern Italy, LIFE NatConnect2030 will take action at more than 500 sites to enhance biodiversity and reinforce ecological corridors. LIFE SNAP Ireland will target barriers to the implementation of Ireland's Natura 2000 priority action fund. France's national biodiversity strategy will engage local authorities and mobilise citizens to foster change in the way we live and produce through LIFE BIODIVFr. In Czechia, PROSPECTIVE LIFE will implement ‘active species conservation tools' to help reverse the decline of at least 25 species. Finally, in Austria, LIFE AMooRe aims to restore more than 1,400 hectares of peatland including 13 different habitats and 37 high conservation value species.

Regarding climate change, the ACE LIFE project will help Finland become carbon-neutral by 2035 by reducing emissions from agriculture, heavy-duty transport and machinery and phasing out fossil fuels used by small- and medium-sized businesses in industrial processes. LIFE PYRENEES4CLIMA is a cross-border project between Spain, France and Andorra aiming at accelerating climate adaptation in the Pyrenees by improving knowledge and capacity to cope with the impact of climate change on nature, people and the economy. Finally, in Bulgaria, LIFE-SIP CLIMA-SUMP will implement Sustainable Urban Mobility Plans (SUMPs) in six municipalities to help achieve zero-emissions mobility on the road towards climate-neutrality. 


The LIFE programme is the EU's funding instrument for the environment and climate action. It has been bringing green ideas to life since 1992 and, to date, has co-financed over 5,500 projects across the EU and in third countries. For the 2021-2027 period, the Commission has increased LIFE programme funding by almost 60%, up to €5.4 billion, and included the new clean energy transition sub-programme. The LIFE Programme is managed by the European Climate, Infrastructure and Environment Executive Agency (CINEA).

LIFE Strategic Nature Projects (SNAPs) and Strategic Integrated Projects (SIPs) aim to support the implementation of EU environmental and climate legislation and policies at regional, multi-regional, national, or trans-national level. 

They are designed to build on the success of LIFE's Integrated Projects (IPs) – which were funded between 2014 and 2020 – to help Europe become the world's first climate-neutral continent by 2050, and to successfully implement the European Green Deal

LIFE projects support the EU Biodiversity Strategy for 2030, the EU Climate Adaptation Strategy, the Water Framework Directive, Air Quality Directive, Marine Strategy Framework Directive, the Circular Economy Action Plan, the Zero Pollution Action Plan, the Nature Restoration Law and contribute to a clean energy transition as well as  other national, regional, urban or sectoral climate strategies and plans. 

For More Information

LIFE Strategic Projects – short descriptions 

LIFE Programme 

European Green Deal


Publication date
22 February 2024
Representation in Ireland