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Knowledge category: Funding and financing

LIFE 'Circular economy and quality of life' sub-programme

Updated on 03.03.2023

The 'Circular economy and quality of life' sub-programme aims at facilitating the transition toward a sustainable, circular, toxic-free, energy-efficient and climate-resilient economy and at protecting, restoring and improving the quality of the environment, either through direct interventions or by supporting the integration of those objectives in other policies.

Financial entity: European Commission
Contact: via contact form

Relevance for Circular Systemic Solutions

The 'Circular economy and quality of life' sub-programme covers themes that are of high interest to cities and regions working on advancing circularity. The funding is available to public authorities that want to tackle challenges that are cross-sectorial and involve multiple value chains, which in turn require implementation of Circular Systemic Solutions (CSSs). More specific information on relevance for CSS depends on a type of project under 'Circular economy and quality of life' (SIP, TA, SAP, OA) and can be found below:

(For 'Support section' on the CCRI website: Here the relevance for CSS for each type of project from rows 6-9 will be presented)

Projects are co-financed in the area of circular economy, including recovery of resources from waste, water, air, noise, soil and chemical management as well as environmental governance. The sub-programme provides mostly action grants for projects implementing innovative and best practice solutions in these areas through the Standard Action Projects (SAP). It also covers the implementation, monitoring and evaluation of EU environmental policy and law through the Strategic Integrated Projects (SIPs).

Applicant criteria

Any public or private organisation legally registered in the European Union (including overseas countries and territories (OCTs)) or countries associated to the LIFE programme (participating countries).

Eligible projects/themes

The 'Circular economy and quality of life' sub-programme has the following priorities:

  • circular economy and waste;
  • soil;
  • air;
  • noise;
  • water chemicals;
  • new European Bauhaus;
  • and environmental governance.

Amount of funding

The total budget is € 697.5 million.

Application process

LIFE applications can be single or two stage processes. Most of the proposals relevant for CCRI are two-stage with a 10-page expression of interest and then a full application if selected in the second stage.

If single stage, a full proposal is requested. A full proposal includes administrative forms and a technical form (Part B).

Annexes of max. 10 MB can be included in a single document of Part B. More details to support applicants are provided following the link.


The deadline depends on a specific call. Typical deadline periods are September/October, January and April. The current LIFE programme will run until 2027.

Financing type

Grants & subsidies

Territories involved

Rural areas

<5 000


large 500 000-200 000, medium 200 000-50 000, and small cities 50 000-5 000

Metropolitan areas

large metropolitan area >1.5 million, metropolitan area 1.5 million-500 000



predominantly urban regions, intermediate and predominantly rural regions, refer to TERCET typology NUTS 3 region



Intra-territorial areas

Industrial zones

Agricultural zones

Brown field zones

Coastal areas

Mountain areas


Cross-border areas


Water areas


e.g. commercial, residential, service, industrial