The European Commission has approved funding for 202 new projects under the LIFE+ programme, the European Union’s environment fund. Among the projects approved is a Eur2.2 million project by Clare County Council for tourism on the Burren. Half the money will come from the European Commission and the other half is national co-funding.
The Burren project will build on previous work to protect the rich heritage of the Burren while supporting local employment and economic activity. The project aims to strengthen the integration of tourism and natural heritage, reconciling tourism development with conservation of biodiversity and cultural heritage in the Burren.
The Burren is internationally renowned for its karst limestone and a rich and diverse selection of flora and fauna, archaeological monuments and traditional cultural practices.
The other projects across Europe cover actions in the fields of nature conservation, environmental policy, climate change and information and communication on environmental issues. They represent a total investment of some €516.5 million, of which the EU will provide €268.4 million.
The Commission received 1 078 applications from the 27 EU Member States in response to its latest call for proposals, which closed in July 2011. Of these, 202 were selected for co-funding through the programme’s three components: LIFE+ Nature and Biodiversity, LIFE+ Environment Policy and Governance and LIFE+ Information and Communication.