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European Commission - Press release

Environment: €34.8 million in new funding to bring environmental solutions to market

Brussels, 08 May 2012 – The European Commission is launching a €34.8 million call for eco-innovation projects. Businesses and entrepreneurs from across Europe can apply for funding to help bring novel environmental projects to the market. The call is open to eco-innovative products, techniques, services and processes that aim to prevent or reduce environmental impacts, or which contribute to the optimal use of resources. The call for applications is open until 6 September 2012, and around 50 projects will be selected for funding.

Janez Potočnik, European Commissioner for the Environment said: "For the past four years, CIP Eco-Innovation has helped more than one hundred innovative green products reach the marketplace. The programme shows how businesses can help our economies to grow in an environmentally sustainable way, once they have the right support. I would particularly encourage SMEs to apply for funding – they have a vital role to play in driving forward the EU economy, and last year they made up more than 65 % of applications."

This year's call has five main priority areas:

  • materials recycling

  • water

  • sustainable building products

  • green business

  • the food and drink sector

The call is targeted particularly at SMEs that have developed an innovative green product, process or service, which is struggling to find its place in the market. The call offers co-funding to cover up to 50 % of the project cost, and is likely to support around 50 new projects this year.

Some 50 projects are now set to launch from last year's call, and over 140 projects are already underway. Examples of current schemes include converting old discarded TVs into tiles, new waste sorting mechanisms, innovative eco- packaging for milk, and a new technique for recycling textiles.

Background

Eco-Innovation is funded via the Competitiveness and Innovation Programme (CIP) and has a budget of approximately €200 million for 2008 to 2013. It supports technologically-proven products which help make better use of Europe's natural resources. Eco-Innovation is a green strand of the CIP and contributes to the Eco-Innovation Action Plan (EcoAP). The programme is managed by the Executive Agency for Competitiveness and Innovation (EACI).

The 2012 call for proposals is being presented today (8 May) during the Eco-Innovation Info Day in the Charlemagne Building.

Further information:

For more information on CIP Eco-innovation visit:

http://ec.europa.eu/ecoinnovation

For examples of previously successful projects, see:

Contacts :

Joe Hennon (+32 2 295 35 93)

Monica Westeren (+32 2 299 18 30)

At EACI :

Andrea Pascal (+32 2 299 04 52)


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