Horizon 2020 Green Deal call

Call opening: 22 September 2020

Call deadline: 26 January 2021

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The European Green Deal is a high-profile review of existing EU environmental and sustainability policy, supported by new legislation with the target of making the EU ‘carbon neutral’ by 2050. €1bn of funding has been made available for a Green Deal Horizon 2020 call which covers all areas important to the Green Deal.

UK organisations are eligible to participate in and lead proposals. UK participation in successful projects will be funded by the EC for the duration of project regardless of project start and end dates. For more information, see the UKRI webpage on the Green Deal.

The full call programme can be found on the European Commission website (page 62 onwards).

There are eight thematic areas containing one or more sub-topics

Area 1: Increasing Climate Ambition - cross sectoral challenges

  • Preventing and fighting extreme wildfires with the integration and demonstration of innovative means
  • Towards climate–neutral and socially innovative cities
  • Climate-resilient innovation packages for EU Regions

Area 2: Clean, affordable and secure energy

  • Innovative land-based and offshore renewable energy technologies and their integration into the energy system
  • Develop and demonstrate a 100 MW electrolyser upscaling the link between renewables and commercial/industrial applications

Area 3: Industry for a clean and circular economy

  • Closing the industrial carbon cycle to combat climate change - Industrial feasibility of catalytic routes for sustainable alternatives to fossil resources
  • Demonstration of systemic solutions for the territorial deployment of the circular economy

Area 4: Energy and resource efficient buildings

  • Building and renovating in an energy and resource efficient way

Area 5: Sustainable and smart mobility

  • Green airports and ports as multimodal hubs for sustainable and smart mobility

Area 6: Farm to fork

  • Testing and demonstrating systemic innovations in support of the Farm-to-Fork Strategy

Area 7: Biodiversity and Ecosystem services

  • Restoring biodiversity and ecosystem services

Area 8: Zero-pollution, toxic free environment

  • Innovative, systemic zero-pollution solutions to protect health, environment and natural resources from persistent and mobile chemicals
  • Fostering regulatory science to address combined exposures to industrial chemicals and pharmaceuticals: from science to evidence-based policies


In addition to these eight areas, there are two ‘supporting sections’ on knowledge systems and research infrastructures and citizen engagement, respectively.

Area 9: Strengthening our knowledge in support of the European Green Deal

  • European Research Infrastructures capacities and services to address European Green Deal challenges
  • Developing end-user products and services for all stakeholders and citizens supporting climate adaptation and mitigation
  • Transparent & Accessible Seas and Oceans: Towards a Digital Twin of the Ocean

Area 10: Empowering citizens for the transition towards a climate neutral, sustainable Europe:

  • European capacities for citizen deliberation and participation for the Green Deal
  • Behavioural, social and cultural change for the Green Deal
  • Enabling citizens to act on climate change, for sustainable development and environmental protection through education, citizen science, observation initiatives, and civic engagement

The Green Deal is an important policy direction for the EU and further calls will feature in Horizon Europe (the successor funding programme to Horizon 2020).

While we do not yet know whether the UK will associate to Horizon Europe, the recent UK Government Research and Development Road Map for Research states that if association does not take place “We will make funding available to allow UK partners to participate in European schemes open to third countries” (no details available yet). It is anticipated that the majority of Horizon Europe calls for collaborative projects will welcome third country participation. In either an association or a non-association scenario it is therefore anticipated that collaboration with European partners can and will continue beyond the end of 2020.