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Financing Opportunity – Minimising climate impact on aquaculture: mitigation and adaptation solutions for future climate regimes

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Financing Opportunity – Minimising climate impact on aquaculture: mitigation and adaptation solutions for future climate regimes


Programme: Horizon Europe Framework Programme (HORIZON)

Call: Fair, healthy and environmentally-friendly food systems from primary production to consumption (HORIZON-CL6-2024-FARM2FORK-02)

Type of action: HORIZON-IA HORIZON Innovation Actions

Deadline dates: 22 February 2024 17:00:00 Brussels time
17 September 2024 17:00:00 Brussels time

Legal entities from Greece, Romania, Türkiye and Ukraine, among other countries, are eligible applicants.

The maximum Horizon Europe funding rate for Innovation action is 70% (except for non-profit legal entities, where a rate of up to 100% applies).

Selected proposals are expected to contribute to all of the following expected outcomes:

  • Contribution to sustainable aquaculture systems (in marine and/or transitional, and/or fresh waters) for fair, safe, healthy, climate-resilient and environment-friendly food systems with low impact on aquatic ecosystems, supporting the European Green Deal and the farm to fork strategy, the “Strategic guidelines for a more sustainable and competitive EU aquaculture for the period 2021 to 2030”, and the “Action plan for the development of organic production”;
  • Implementation of innovations, such as dietary shifts and aspects of circularity, for a more sustainable and competitive European aquaculture enhancing aquaculture resilience to adverse consequences of climate change;
  • Positioning of European aquaculture production as the global reference for sustainability and quality, increase its competitiveness, reduce EU dependence on imports of fisheries and aquaculture products and create more jobs, especially in rural and coastal regions;
  • Contribution to aquaculture production with a reduced environmental footprint, advancing towards climate-neutrality;
  • Contribution to technologically-advanced aquaculture production (indicatively through the use of techniques such as artificial intelligence, sensors, internet-of-things and robotics), fully embedded in natural, social, ethical and economic sustainability.

Proposals are expected to:

  • enhance knowledge of the impacts of climate change on aquaculture production at environmental, social and economic levels;
  • identify, forecast and assess the main effects of climate change on different aquaculture production systems and on their ecological carrying capacity;
  • consider impacts of climate change such as water availability (e.g., rise in evaporation, decrease in rainfall, extreme weather events like droughts or floods), water quality (e.g., acidification, eutrophication, pollution, contamination), temperature rise, sea level rise, spread of diseases (e.g. recrudescence of endemic and emerging diseases in traditional and recirculating aquaculture systems), reduced fish welfare, invasive species, and other climate related risks;
  • investigate adaptation and mitigation solutions and opportunities such as technological, social, economic, and biological/ecological aspects, selection of suitable sites, culture methods (including the contribution of organic production and integrated multi-trophic aquaculture), species plasticity and adaptability to changing environments as well as breeding and selection techniques for a more sustainable, productive and resilient production;
  • address aspects of circularity in terms of more efficient use of resources and less negative impacts on marine environment, including reduction, valorisation, and reuse of waste;
  • build on the work of Horizon 2020 and EMFF projects, such as ClimeFish and CERES, and provide applicable approaches and tools to the aquaculture sector.

Proposed topics should contribute to one or more of the following impacts:

  • enable sustainable farming systems that i) provide consumers with affordable, safe, healthy and sustainable food, ii) increase the provision of ecosystem services, iii) restore and strengthen biodiversity, iv) minimise pollution and pressure on ecosystems and greenhouse gas emissions, v) foster plant, animal and public health, vi) improve animal welfare, and vii) generate fair economic returns for farmers;
  • enable sustainable fisheries and aquaculture, in marine and inland waters, increasing aquatic multi-trophic biomass production in a way compatible with the protection of aquatic ecosystems and biodiversity, and the diversification of fisheries and aquaculture products, for fair, healthy, climate-resilient and environment-friendly food systems with a lower impact on aquatic ecosystems and improved animal welfare;
  • accelerate the transition to sustainable, healthy and inclusive food systems, delivering co-benefits for climate change mitigation and adaptation, environmental sustainability and circularity, sustainable healthy diets and nutrition, food poverty reduction, empowered citizens and communities, and flourishing food businesses, while ensuring food safety and the economic sustainability of EU food systems during the transition.

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