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€200m Earmarked for Marine Research in the EU's Horizon 2020 Programme in 2014-2015

19th December 2013
€200m Earmarked for Marine Research in the EU's Horizon 2020 Programme in 2014-2015

Circa €200 million has been earmarked specifically for marine research and innovation in the first two years (2014/2015) of the EU's seven year Horizon 2020 programme (2014-2020). In addition, significant other funding opportunities for marine research and innovation exist under the various generic headings (i.e. food, transport, energy, environment, climate change, security, etc.).

The €80 billion Horizon 2020 programme (2014-2020) was officially launched in the Dublin Convention Centre on 10th December by EU Commissioner for Research, Innovation and Science, Maire Geoghegan Quinn and Minister for Research and Innovation, Sean Sherlock, TD. An audience of over 2,000 participants heard that more than €15 billion (18%) of the €80 billion budget would be allocated over the first two years. This funding is intended to help boost Europe's knowledge-driven economy, and tackle issues that will make a difference in people's lives. European Commissioner Máire Geoghegan-Quinn said: "It's time to get down to business. Horizon 2020 funding is vital for the future of research and innovation in Europe, and will contribute to growth, jobs and a better quality of life. We have designed Horizon 2020 to produce results, and we have slashed red tape to make it easier to participate. So I am calling on researchers, universities, businesses including SMEs, and others to sign up!"

Welcoming the announcement, Dr Peter Heffernan (CEO, Marine Institute) pointed out that "over the period (2007-2013), Irish marine researchers, including SMEs, participated in 127 successful FP7 projects[1] spanning a number of Thematic Priorities (e.g. Food, Transport, Energy, Environment, etc., bringing in EU grant aid of €48 million, adding value to national research and innovation expenditure and creating circa 200 contract research positions. With Blue Growth a prioritised focal area in Horizon 2020, we expect to significantly top this between 2014 and 2020".

The Commission has identified funding priorities over the first two years (2014-2015) providing researchers and businesses with more certainty than ever before on the direction of EU research policy. Calls from the 2014 budget are already open for submissions with more to follow over the course of the year. Calls in the 2014 budget alone are worth around €7.8 billion, with funding focused on the three key pillars of Horizon 2020:

Societal challenges: €2.8 billion for innovative projects addressing Horizon 2020's seven societal challenges, broadly: health; agriculture, maritime and bioeconomy; energy; transport; climate action, environment, resource efficiency and raw materials; reflective societies; and security.
Industrial Leadership: €1.8 billion to support Europe's industrial leadership in areas like ICT, nanotechnologies, advanced manufacturing, robotics, biotechnologies and space.
Excellent Science: Around €3 billion, including €1.7 billion for grants from the European Research Council for top scientists and €800 million for Marie Skłodowska-Curie fellowships for younger researchers.

Published in Marine Science
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Marine Science Perhaps it is the work of the Irish research vessel RV Celtic Explorer out in the Atlantic Ocean that best highlights the essential nature of marine research, development and sustainable management, through which Ireland is developing a strong and well-deserved reputation as an emerging centre of excellence. From Wavebob Ocean energy technology to aquaculture to weather buoys and oil exploration these pages document the work of Irish marine science and how Irish scientists have secured prominent roles in many European and international marine science bodies.

 

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At A Glance – Ocean Facts

  • 71% of the earth’s surface is covered by the ocean
  • The ocean is responsible for the water cycle, which affects our weather
  • The ocean absorbs 30% of the carbon dioxide added to the atmosphere by human activity
  • The real map of Ireland has a seabed territory ten times the size of its land area
  • The ocean is the support system of our planet.
  • Over half of the oxygen we breathe was produced in the ocean
  • The global market for seaweed is valued at approximately €5.4 billion
  • · Coral reefs are among the oldest ecosystems in the world — at 230 million years
  • 1.9 million people live within 5km of the coast in Ireland
  • Ocean waters hold nearly 20 million tons of gold. If we could mine all of the gold from the ocean, we would have enough to give every person on earth 9lbs of the precious metal!
  • Aquaculture is the fastest growing food sector in the world – Ireland is ranked 7th largest aquaculture producer in the EU
  • The Atlantic Ocean is the second largest ocean in the world, covering 20% of the earth’s surface. Out of all the oceans, the Atlantic Ocean is the saltiest
  • The Pacific Ocean is the largest ocean in the world. It’s bigger than all the continents put together
  • Ireland is surrounded by some of the most productive fishing grounds in Europe, with Irish commercial fish landings worth around €200 million annually
  • 97% of the earth’s water is in the ocean
  • The ocean provides the greatest amount of the world’s protein consumed by humans
  • Plastic affects 700 species in the oceans from plankton to whales.
  • Only 10% of the oceans have been explored.
  • 8 million tonnes of plastic enter the ocean each year, equal to dumping a garbage truck of plastic into the ocean every minute.
  • 12 humans have walked on the moon but only 3 humans have been to the deepest part of the ocean.

(Ref: Marine Institute)

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