Overarching goals of HEU such as tackling climate change, achieving the UN Sustainable Development Goals and boosting EU competitiveness and growth are too general to write an effective application, IAR’s Christophe Luguel stressed during the webinar. It is important to carefully analyse current European documents in advance, including the EU Green Deal, the Farm-to-Fork Strategy, the Bioeconomy Strategy and the Circular Economy Action Plan. “It makes it clear how to frame your proposal, what are the drivers for the European Commission to work on this topic and what impacts/goals you will be contributing to with this.”
At the legal level, Horizon Europe is based on 4 pillars/clusters that lead to areas of intervention. At the programme level, a strategic plan is established defining policy priorities, strategic orientations for research and innovation and expected impacts. This results in annual work programmes in which these impacts are translated into destinations, with sub-topics and expected outcomes in certain application areas.
For players in the industrial bioeconomy, Pillar 2 is particularly important, and within it Cluster 6: Circular Economy and Bioeconomy Sectors, or CIRCBIO for short, for which a total of €9 billion is available. It includes the fields of interest of Food, Bioeconomy, Natural Resources, Agriculture and Environment.
During the webinar, 3 of the total of 9 CIRCBIO topics for 2021 were highlighted:
- Marcel van Berkel (Circular Biobased Delta) discussed subtopic 01-03:
- Innovative solutions to over-packaging and single-use plastics, and related microplastic pollution. This concerns promoting plastics based on biobased or circular feedstocks, but also about reducing microplastics in the environment. This is not only a matter of technological innovation, but also of social innovation.
- Tatjana Schwabe (CLIB) discussed topic 1-4: Increasing the circularity in textiles, plastics and/or electronics value chains. This is about making textiles, plastics, electronics and building materials more circular. These have a major impact on the climate and are as yet not very circular. Information and communication with end users is of great importance here.
- Christophe Luguel (IAR) discussed topic 1-5: Novel, non-plant biomass feedstocks for industrial applications. The main objective is to develop novel, non-vegetable feedstocks for industrial applications (food and feed, biobased materials and chemicals) by means of advanced biotechnology, such as micro-organisms, algae, insects or fungi. A multi-actor approach across the value chain with large consortia (20-30 partners) is necessary here.
During the 3BI event there was ample opportunity for matchmaking and to take the first steps in forming such consortia.
A complete overview of the current funding & tender-opportunities in the CIRCBIO cluster can be found on the website of the European Commission. For questions about Horizon Europe and the cooperation around it, please contact your own 3BI network partner:
This article was written in cooperation with Circular Biobased Delta.
Image above: Mopic/Shutterstock