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Ocean models for seasonal to decadal regional climate impacts and feedbacks
Horizon Europe - Cluster 6 - Destination 5: Land, ocean and water for climate action
Estimated EU contribution per project
Link to the call
Link to the submission
Successful proposals will contribute to the European Green Deal, addressing resilience to climate change (mitigation and adaptation) in coastal areas. Improved ocean models for 21st century climate projections, from regional to coastal scales, and from seasonal to decadal timeframes, will support the sustainability of the blue economy and the protection of ocean health and coastal landscapes.
A current limitation to climate change projections for EU-basin scale to coastal use comes from an insufficient representation and resolution of basin and coastal ocean dynamics and from an unsatisfactory understanding of the oceanic biogeochemical cycle. Most climate models include the ocean dimension that stops at the regional scale as defined by meteorology and climatology like in CORDEX In parallel, operational oceanography centres develop and operate ocean models (physics, biogeochemistry, sea-ice) for daily ocean forecasting and reanalysis that represent more exhaustively the full ocean dynamics. Methods should help close the gap between current climate projections (global, centennial) on the one hand and existing Copernicus Marine physics and biogeochemical models used for daily ocean forecasting.
Proposals are expected to focus on:
- Developing capabilities for producing decadal to long-term (multi-decadal to centennial) refined predictions of the ocean state, at the scale of European regional seas including the coastal zones, where climate change risk is considered to be particularly high;
- Improving the representation of ocean processes (and dynamics, especially at regional to coastal scale) that can be integrated in in climate models;
- Developing capabilities for producing decadal to long-term EU basin scale predictions of biogeochemistry models to support feedback into global/regional marine ecosystem models and climate models;
- Validating the approach by performing historical runs and comparing corresponding model results to observations, proxy information, and / or reanalyses over an instrumental multi-decadal period, up to centennial scales, with characterized uncertainties;
- Investigating and assessing the quality of coastal models or ecosystem models of the low to mid trophic food web levels, over European seas and their coastal zones, with characterized uncertainties.
Methodology and developments should be benchmarked with two relevant use cases, to be showcased in three different European regional seas and coastal areas involving both scientists and end users:
- Development and demonstration of regional ocean climate risk services in coastal areas, due to sea level rise, waves, surges, or any other extreme event;
- Development and demonstration of regional ocean climate services in coastal areas supporting the blue economy (e.g. aquaculture, marine renewal energies, tourism).
Proposals shall demonstrate that the targeted scientific framework, ocean models integrated into EU basin scale climate models and resulting in basin scale ocean services for the marine and maritime sectors can be replicable to all EU regional seas. Proposals should plan resources for coordination and networking activities with related projects, in particular those funded under the Missions “Restore our Ocean and waters by 2030” and “Adaptation to Climate Change”, as well as with relevant projects funded under Cluster 4 – Space addressing Copernicus services (marine, land, emergency, climate), Cluster 5 Destination “Climate sciences and responses for the transformation towards climate neutrality”, and Cluster 6, as appropriate. These networking and joint activities could, for example, involve the participation in joint workshops, the exchange of knowledge, the development and adoption of best practices, or joint communication activities to break the silos between science communities.
The proposal should favour open data, open source, and public-use models and algorithms with open source licensing and integrable in the Digital Twin of the Ocean. Proposals should leverage the data and services available through European Research Infrastructures federated under the European Open Science Cloud, as well as data from relevant Data Spaces in the data-driven analyses. Projects could additionally benefit from access to infrastructure and relevant FAIR data by collaborating with projects funded under the topics HORIZON-INFRA-2022-EOSC-01-03: FAIR and open data sharing in support of healthy oceans, seas, coastal and inland waters and HORIZON-INFRA-2024-EOSC-01-01: FAIR and open data sharing in support of the mission adaptation to climate change.
Synergies and complementarities: HORIZON-CL6-2023-CLIMATE-01-08: Closing the research gaps on ocean Essential Climate Variables (ECVs) in support of global assessments, relevant EU Research Infrastructures.
In this topic the integration of the gender dimension (sex and gender analysis) in research and innovation content is not a mandatory requirement.
The proposals will support the Digital and Green Transitions and will directly support Destination Earth and the development of the Digital Twins, and the Digital Twin Ocean in particular. They should contribute to the improvement of marine information services provided by European programmes like Copernicus, and their uptake at local, coastal and EU regional levels.
Project results are expected to contribute to all the following expected outcomes:
- Demonstration of the fit for purpose and configuration of ocean models, for climate change impact assessment in European sea basins and coastal areas, in particular on marine ecosystems;
- Demonstration of EU basin scale to coastal ocean climate services that support policy implementation and the development of climate adaptation strategies and of a carbon-neutral blue economy (e.g., ocean climate risk services);
- Development and publication of indicators on ocean status and health, targeted towards territorial decision-makers, complementary to current Global Climate Observing System (GCOS) Essential Climate Variables or Copernicus Ocean State Reports;
- Integration of the developments in the digital perspective, interoperable and/or integrable with Destination Earth and the Digital Twin Ocean;
- Fostered collaboration between the climate science community and operational oceanography communities (operating ocean services on a sustained way).
Regions / countries for funding
Moldova (Moldova), Albania (Shqipëria), Armenia (Հայաստան), Azerbaijan (Azərbaycan), Belarus (Беларусь), 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), New Zealand (Aotearoa), North Macedonia (Северна Македонија), Norway (Norge), Serbia (Srbija/Сpбија), Tunisia (تونس /Tūnis), Türkiye, Ukraine (Україна), United Kingdom
Education and training institution, International organization, 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
Activities should reach TRL 3-5 by the end of the project.
If projects use satellite-based earth observation, positioning, navigation and/or related timing data and services, beneficiaries must make use of Copernicus and/or Galileo/EGNOS (other data and services may additionally be used).
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.