13.12.2011 / News - EU Level

EU Budget: Get real with funding for LIFE and biodiversity

On 12 December the European Commission released its proposals for the LIFE environment fund 2014-2020. Despite an increase from €2.1 billion to €3.2 billion, LIFE will remain too small to make this strategically important fund fit for purpose. LIFE is the only financial instrument of the EU solely dedicated to supporting the environment through securing sustainable development and a resource efficient Europe.

by Jana Lacina

Following the announcement, Andreas Baumüller, Head Natural Resources and Land Use at WWF European Policy Office, stated: “The Commission only proposes a paltry €3.2 billion investment over the next seven years, representing only 0.3% of the total budget. If we want to face up to the environmental challenges of our time we need to put our money where our mouth is and make LIFE an effective tool.

Under this proposal spending on LIFE will only be equal to one day’s spending of the whole EU budget. Currently important LIFE projects are not getting past the planning phase because of lack of funding, resulting in many lost opportunities. With such a tiny allocation, commitments made by national governments for biodiversity and climate change will fail from the start of the new EU budget cycle. WWF counts on the European Council and Parliament to increase the overall budget of LIFE to a modest 1 % of the EU budget."

Link to Commission proposal

Further information:
• Andreas Baumüller,  Biodiversity Policy Officer , WWF European
Policy Office, Tel. +32 2  740 00 921; email:  abaumuller(at)
• Philippe Carr, Media and Communications, WWF European Policy Office,
Tel. +32 32 2 7400 925; Mob. +32 (0)477 393 400,  pcarr(at)