Founded in 1992, LIFE is the EU's financial instrument for the environment. The LIFE Regulation provides for funding of "operational activities of NGOs that are primarily active in protecting and enhancing the environment at European level and involved in the development and implementation of Community policy and legislation" (Annex 1 to the Regulation).
At least 78% of the budgetary resources for LIFE are used for action grants for projects. However, LIFE also supports the operations of EU level environmental and climate related NGOs through the competitive and transparent awarding of operating grants. The number of NGOs funded each year varies depending on the quality of the applications, the amounts applied for and the total budget available. This funding aims to strengthen the participation of NGOs in the dialogue process in environmental and climate related policy-making and in its implementation and gives voice to the civil society.
The operating grants are awarded on a a biannual basis with calls for proposals published on the DG Environment web page. The applications are evaluated and ranked according to criteria relating to the extent to which the organisations can contribute to EU policy development and implementation in the priority areas of EU environmental and climate policy. EU level environmental NGOs that wish to apply for funding under this programme must be non-profitmaking and independent. They must also be active at a European level with activities and members in at least three EU Member States.
NGOs funded in 2016 and 2017
|2° Investing Initiative||European Association of Zoos and Aquaria||Friends of the Earth Europe|
|CEE Bankwatch Network||Health Care Without Harm Europe|
|European Cyclists' Federation|
|BirdLife Europe||European Environmental Bureau|
|Health & Environment Alliance|
|Climate Action Network Europe||WWF European Policy Programme|
|International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements EU Group|
|Coalition Clean Baltic||EUROPARC Federation||Justice & Environment|
|Carbon Disclosure Project Europe|
|CEEweb for Biodiversity||Federation of Associations for Hunting and Conservation of the EU||NGO Shipbreaking Platform|
|Third Generation Environmentalism|
|Pesticide Action Network Europe||Seas at Risk||Slow Food|
|European Federation for Transport & Environment|
|Wetlands International - European Association|
|WWF International Danube-Carpathian Programme||Zero Waste Europe|
A listing of NGOs funded from 1997 until 2013 is available in the archive page