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Demonstration network on climate-smart farming – linking research stations
Horizon Europe - Cluster 6 - Destination 5: Land, ocean and water for climate action
Estimated EU contribution per project
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Link to the submission
A wide adoption of practices contributing to mitigation of climate change and enhanced carbon storage by farmers is a priority to ensure that the EU reaches GHG mitigation objectives by 2030 and climate-neutrality for land use by 2035 and for the overall economy by 2050.
The conservation and enhancement of Earth’s natural terrestrial carbon sinks such as soils and plants, forests, farmed lands and wetlands is crucial. The European Green Deal gives research and innovation (R&I) a significant role to play in supporting the design and implementation of policies that will ensure the achievement of the EU’s climate objectives. Project implementation is expected to contribute to mitigation of and adaptation to climate change and help achieve climate-neutrality.
Farming is also vulnerable to impacts of climate change; hence adaptation is of utmost importance. Mainstreaming the use of climate-smart practices has been recognised as a priority at the global level, including by the G-20.
The overall aim is to establish a three-level network in a phased manner over Cluster 6 work programmes 2021/2022 and 2023/2024. The first level is a network which engages front-runner farmers introducing on-farm trials and demonstration of innovations, using existing knowledge both in the EU and in Associated Countries (project “Climate Farm Demo”). The second level is a network to connect to all advisors on the subject in the Member States, building on achievements of Horizon 2020 projects and EIP-AGRI operational groups and the development of Member States’ AKIS, to ensure the provision of targeted advice. The third level of the network – the present topic – will engage and strengthen the capacity of experimental research stations on climate issues.
- Network existing research stations involved in adaptation to or mitigation of climate change in agriculture, to create an EU network including all Member States and where possible Associated Countries and to stimulate effective cross-fertilisation among them;
- Exploit existing solutions and develop new ones through practice-oriented on-farm testing and demonstration in a co-creative approach with pilot farmers and their advisors;
- Collect and compare tool-kits for assessing GHG balances at farm level, monitoring of performance in reducing emission, decision-support tools, climate services, etc. for possible use also on average farms;
- Explore carbon farming techniques (as defined in the Communication on “Sustainable Carbon Cycles”) and their outcomes, also in terms of better farm management; analyse costs of carbon farming management practices and revenue possibilities as well as related risk and challenges; develop and/or test monitoring, reporting and verification systems; facilitate knowledge exchange and support tailored training and advisory services;
- Foster knowledge exchange within and among Member States and regions and establish links with the EIP-AGRI and Member States’ AKIS networks and coordination bodies;
- Include a task to collaborate with the project “Climate Farm Demo” funded under topic HORIZON-CL6-2021-CLIMATE-01-04 and with the project funded under topic HORIZON-CL6-2022-CLIMATE-01-03 “Demonstration network on climate-smart farming – boosting the role of advisory services”.
The project should operate for at least five years and build on the outcomes of the climate-related projects from various funding sources. The project must implement the multi-actor approach and may involve social innovation.
In this topic the integration of the gender dimension (sex and gender analysis) in research and innovation content is not a mandatory requirement.
- The knowledge base of climate-related farming practices is expanded, resulting in increased application of climate-neutral approaches;
- Different methods of climate-smart agriculture in plant and animal production are assessed and evaluated with all relevant actors involved; with all relevant actors involved;
- The involvement of and adoption by farmers of innovative / smart farming practices that mitigate emissions of greenhouse gases (GHGs) and that foster adaptation of the sector to climate change is accelerated. In the long-term, this will support a more substantial contribution of the farming sector to mitigation of GHG emissions and to carbon storage;
- Implementation of the EU carbon farming initiative, as presented in the communication on “Sustainable Carbon Cycles”  is supported;
- The involvement of Member States’ and Associated Countries’ agricultural knowledge and innovation systems (AKIS) in climate-related farming issues is increased, including through linking to national, regional and local projects under the European Innovation Partnership "Agricultural productivity and sustainability" (EIP-AGRI) and to research stations, with a view to wider dissemination and enhanced interaction within and across the Member States and Associated Countries.
Regions / countries for funding
Moldova (Moldova), Albania (Shqipëria), Armenia (Հայաստան), Bosnia and Herzegovina (Bosna i Hercegovina / Босна и Херцеговина), Faeroes (Føroyar / Færøerne), Georgia (საქართველო), Island (Ísland), Israel (ישראל / إِسْرَائِيل), Kosovo (Kosova/Kosovë / Косово), Montenegro (Црна Гора), Morocco (المغرب), North Macedonia (Северна Македонија), Norway (Norge), Serbia (Srbija/Сpбија), Tunisia (تونس /Tūnis), Türkiye, Ukraine (Україна), United Kingdom
EU Body, Education and training institution, International organization, Natural Person, Non-Profit Organisation (NPO) / Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO), Other, Private institution, incl. private company (private for profit), Public Body (national, regional and local; incl. EGTCs), Research Institution incl. University, Small and medium-sized enterprise (SME)
To be eligible for funding, applicants must be established in one of the following countries:
- the Member States of the European Union, including their outermost regions
- the Overseas Countries and Territories (OCTs) linked to the Member States
- third countries associated to Horizon Europe - see list of particpating countries
Only legal entities forming a consortium are eligible to participate in actions provided that the consortium includes, as beneficiaries, three legal entities independent from each other and each established in a different country as follows:
- at least one independent legal entity established in a Member State; and
- at least two other independent legal entities, each established in different Member States or Associated Countries.
Any legal entity, regardless of its place of establishment, including legal entities from non-associated third countries or international organisations (including international European research organisations) is eligible to participate (whether it is eligible for funding or not), provided that the conditions laid down in the Horizon Europe Regulation have been met, along with any other conditions laid down in the specific call topic.
A ‘legal entity’ means any natural or legal person created and recognised as such under national law, EU law or international law, which has legal personality and which may, acting in its own name, exercise rights and be subject to obligations, or an entity without legal personality.
- Affiliated entities — Affiliated entities (i.e. entities with a legal or capital link to a beneficiary which participate in the action with similar rights and obligations to the beneficiaries, but which do not sign the grant agreement and therefore do not become beneficiaries themselves) are allowed, if they are eligible for participation and funding.
- Associated partners — Associated partners (i.e. entities which participate in the action without signing the grant agreement, and without the right to charge costs or claim contributions) are allowed, subject to any conditions regarding associated partners set out in the specific call conditions.
- Entities without legal personality — Entities which do not have legal personality under their national law may exceptionally participate, provided that their representatives have the capacity to undertake legal obligations on their behalf, and offer guarantees to protect the EU’s financial interests equivalent to those offered by legal persons.
- EU bodies — Legal entities created under EU law including decentralised agencies may be part of the consortium, unless provided for otherwise in their basic act.
- Joint Research Centre (‘JRC’)— Where provided for in the specific call conditions, applicants may include in their proposals the possible contribution of the JRC but the JRC will not participate in the preparation and submission of the proposal. Applicants will indicate the contribution that the JRC could bring to the project based on the scope of the topic text. After the evaluation process, the JRC and the consortium selected for funding may come to an agreement on the specific terms of the participation of the JRC. If an agreement is found, the JRC may accede to the grant agreement as beneficiary requesting zero funding or participate as an associated partner, and would accede to the consortium as a member.
- Associations and interest groupings — Entities composed of members (e.g. European research infrastructure consortia (ERICs)) may participate as ‘sole beneficiaries’ or ‘beneficiaries without legal personality’. However, if the action is in practice implemented by the individual members, those members should also participate (either as beneficiaries or as affiliated entities, otherwise their costs will NOT be eligible.
other eligibility criteria
Proposals must apply the multi-actor approach. See definition of the multi-actor approach on pages 21-23 of the work programme.
Relevance for EU Macro-Region
EUSAIR - EU Strategy for the Adriatic and Ionian Region, EUSALP - EU Strategy for the Alpine Space, EUSBSR - EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region, EUSDR - EU Strategy for the Danube Region
UN Sustainable Development Goals (UN-SDGs)
All proposals must be submitted electronically via the Funders & Tenders Portal electronic submission system (accessible via the topic page in the Search Funding & Tenders section). Paper submissions are NOT possible.
Proposals must be complete and contain all parts and mandatory annexes and supporting documents, e.g. plan for the exploitation and dissemination of the results including communication activities, etc.
The application form will have two parts:
- Part A (to be filled in directly online) contains administrative information about the applicant organisations (future coordinator and beneficiaries and affiliated entities), the summarised budget for the proposal and call-specific questions;
- Part B (to be downloaded from the Portal submission system, completed and then assembled and re-uploaded as a PDF in the system) contains the technical description of the project.
Annexes and supporting documents will be directly available in the submission system and must be uploaded as PDF files (or other formats allowed by the system).
The limit for a full application (Part B) is 45 pages.