Second Call for BESTbelt proposals starts mid-January 2023

The BESTbelt project is starting in its second year and a 2nd Call for proposals will be launched mid-January 2023. „BESTbelt“ aims to make it easier for local nature conservation organisations getting access to EU funds and strengthening their potential.

Saline Ulcinj, restoration work at the Balkan Green Belt. © N.Moussa/ EuroNatur

After the first successful year of the new pilot project BESTbelt, the European Commission decided to increase the funds for the new pilot project at the European Green Belt. In total 2,2 million Euros will be made available for a small grant scheme supporting specific projects along the Green Belt from Norway and Finland in the North to Albania, Greece, Bulgaria and Turkey in the South. The project supports initiatives that preserve the biological diversity along the former Iron Curtain, and implement promising approaches for a sustainable regional development. Organisations are encouraged to submit applications for nature conservation projects of up to € 40,000 in funding. Projects with an increased transboundary focus will be able to apply for funding up to € 60,000.  In addition to the financial support, organisations receive training and guidance on how to effectively implement the planned measures.

"After a challenging year for peaceful nature conservation projects along the European Green Belt, we are very happy to continue our successful work and to support local initiatives at the European Green Belt," EuroNatur Executive Director Gabriel Schwaderer says. “The European Green Belt is not only one of the largest nature conservation initiatives of our continent but also a project to further integrate and connect countries in Europe. The topping up of the BESTbelt project enables us to fund even more projects. And we encourage all applicants to submit their concept notes by early March 2023.”

The official contractual partner of this project is EuroNatur. The nature conservation foundation, who operates on an international level, chairs the “European Green Belt Association” (EGBA) and holds responsibility for this project. Besides EuroNatur, BUND Friends of the Earth Germany Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania and BUND Department Green Belt are responsible as Regional Focal Points for the applicants. The EGBA is the ideal institutional framework for effective cooperation across national and administrative borders.

Background information:

  • „BESTbelt“: Based on the successful European Life4BEST-Initiative, who supported projects to sustain the natural heritage in European overseas regions, the „BESTbelt“ campaign (Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services and Training along the European Green Belt) now focusses on countries along the European Green Belt. The project is set for four years.
  • The 2nd Call for fundings of specific projects along the European Green Belt is planned for mid-January 2023. To stay informed, please subscribe to the EGBA-Newsletter.