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The Life programme

The Life programme is the EU´s funding instrument for the environment. The general objective of Life is to contribute to the implementation, updating and development of EU environmental policy and legislation by co-financing pilot or demonstration projects with European added value.

Life began in 1992 and to date there have been three complete phases of the programme (Life I: 1992-1995, Life II: 1996-1999 and Life III: 2000-2006). During this period, Life has co-financed some 3104 projects across the EU, contributing approximately € 2.2 billion to the protection of the environment.

Life+ (2007 - 2013)

The current phase of the programme, Life+, runs from 2007-2013 and has a budget of € 2.143 billion. The legal basis for Life+ is the Regulation (EC) No 614/2007. Life+ covers both the operational expenditure of DG Environment and the co-financing of projects. According to Article 6 of the Life+ Regulation, at least 78 percent of the Life+ budgetary resources must be used for project action grants (i.e. Life+ projects). During the period 2007-2013, the European Commission launched one call for Life+ project proposals per year. Proposals must be eligible under one of the programme’s three components: Life+ Nature and Biodiversity, Life+ Environment Policy and Governance, and Life+ Information and Communication.

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