Ecological Transition receives 64 proposals for the 62 million euro call for aid for the naturalisation of cities.

Jan 19, 2023 | Current affairs, Featured, Post, Thursday Daily Bulletin, Tradition

The Biodiversity Foundation of the Ministry for Ecological Transition and the Demographic Challenge (MITECO) has received 64 applications for aid for projects that contribute to the naturalisation of Spanish cities, increasing both biodiversity and ecological connectivity in urban environments.

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The naturalisation of cities

The initiative has a budget of 62 million euros, where the selected projects will be financed up to 95%, with grants of between 2 and 4 million euros.

This call, corresponding to 2022, is open to city councils in provincial capitals, autonomous cities and municipalities with more than 50,000 inhabitants (also in groups with other entities and neighbouring municipalities with more than 20,000 inhabitants), except for the 18 selected in the call to promote urban naturalisation projects corresponding to 2021.

Thus, proposals have been received from cities in 16 autonomous communities and one autonomous city: Andalusia (10), Aragon (2), Asturias (1), Balearic Islands (1), Canary Islands (2), Cantabria (1), Castile-La Mancha (1), Castile and Leon (6), Catalonia (11), Community of Madrid (9), Community of Valencia (8), Extremadura (1), Galicia (4), La Rioja (1), Basque Country (2), Region of Murcia (3) and the Autonomous City of Melilla (1).

Project selection process
The selection of projects will be carried out on a competitive basis, following a technical and administrative evaluation process based on strict quality criteria.

The regulatory bases of the call promote the selection of highly transformative and ambitious projects, which meet the required technical and strategic criteria such as correctness in their design and technical and economic planning; integration into a public strategy; suitability to the problem to be solved; effective contribution to ecological connectivity, among others.

The call for proposals is expected to be resolved by the end of the first half of 2023. All selected projects must be completed by 31 December 2025 at the latest.

Commitment to the naturalisation of cities
MITECO’s Biodiversity Foundation has already promoted 195 million euros in aid for projects aimed at the naturalisation of cities, which includes the restoration of river ecosystems in urban environments. Thanks to grants under the PRTR funded by NextGenerationEU funds, up to 55 projects in both areas have already started (18 under the 2021 call for the renaturation of cities and 37 under the 2021 call for river ecosystem restoration and flood risk mitigation).

The grants for the renaturalisation of cities promoted by the Fundación Biodiversidad will continue thanks to European Union ERDF funds, for the management of which it has been designated as an intermediate body (IGO).