Safeguarding Bulgarian biodiversity and ecosystems

Funding is now available for the protection of native ecosystems against invasive alien species (IAS), improvement in the integration of biodiversity n different sectoral policies and legislation, and the awareness-raising on biodiversity and ecosystem conservation though nationwide campaigns.

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The loss of biological diversity is a challenge in the EU, with around one in four species currently threatened with extinction. Bulgaria is amongst the countries with the richest biodiversity in Europe covering three bio-geographical regions – Alpine, Black Sea and Continental. National authorities need assistance in addressing threats to biodiversity in a more effective and coordinated way. There is a need to raise awareness and apply a more analytical and methodological way for assessing ecosystems, defining their main threats and mitigating their impact

The EEA Grants will fund three calls for proposals under the ‘Biodiversity and ecosystem services’ programme.

The first and second calls for proposals support protection of native ecosystems against invasive alien species and improvement the integration of biodiversity considerations in sectoral policies and legislation.

In addition a small grants scheme will support nationwide publicity campaigns to raise the awareness of issues related to biodiversity and ecosystems

What is supported?

Foreseen activities foreseen in the first call are:

  • The production of manual(s) to establish common methodologies, including improvements in data collection and sharing. The creation of technical infrastructure for information exchange and tracking the spread of IAS;
  • The setting up and operation of a database with information about IAS, their distribution and activities to combat them;
  • Data entry or migration from the information sources
  • Data sharing with other networks and/or other public information sources for dissemination and interoperability needs;
  • Exchanging information on IAS removal and/or destruction
  • Other research, field studies, networking activities.

Specific activities foreseen in the second call are:

  • Policy research on ecosystem services, including climate change adaptation, access to genetic resources or other topics supporting the enforcement and implementation of legislation identified in the programme
  • Working with stakeholders
  • Capacity building for implementing new cross-sectoral legislation

Foreseen activities foreseen under the small grants scheme are:

  • Fieldwork activities, including the collection of data and the capturing of invasive alien species
  • Purchase of small scale equipment (e.g. GPS), procurement of data (if applicable)
  • Processing and uploading data into the upgraded national information system on biodiversity
  • Expositions, development of information materials and other information dissemination activities
  • Other relevant activities if well justified as necessary for the project implementation

To this end, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway provide €2.1 million in total through the EEA Grants.

Who can apply?

The following Bulgarian entities may apply for funding under all three calls:

  • National Public Authorities
  • Municipalities
  • Research and development institutions, including universities
  • Non-profit and non-governmental environmental organisations

Project partnerships with public or private entities (commercial or non-commercial), as well as non-governmental organisations from the donor countries – Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway – are encouraged. Bulgarian or beneficiary and neighboring countries' entities can also be eligible as project partners.

When is the application deadline?

The application deadline is 20 October.

Programme operator

The ‘Integrated marine and inland water management’ programme is run by the Bulgarian Ministry of Environment and Water. The Norwegian Environment Agency is involved in the programme as a donor programme partner.

Read the full call texts on the website of the programme operator for more information

Read more about the Bulgarian ‘Biodiversity and ecosystem services’ programme here

Read more about open calls for proposals in Bulgaria and other beneficiary countries in our calls calendar