Ireland announces €600,000 green stimulus fund for innovators & SMEs

The Republic of Ireland’s Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has launched a €600,000 funding opportunity for Irish innovators to develop and demonstrate business-ready solutions for the circular economy.

Circular businesses reduce costs by reusing & recycling materials already in use; and build vibrant, new businesses. The EPA’s Green Enterprise: Innovation for a Circular Economy programme supports organisations to develop and demonstrate new circular economy approaches.

Laura Burke, Director General of the EPA said: “We are at a pivotal point for our economy and the recovery steps we take now will shape Ireland for the next decade. Moving to put circular principles at the core of our economic model offers the opportunity to rebuild our economy, generate new jobs and respond to climate change.

“As we emerge from national lockdown, a ‘green’ recovery stimulus provides a unique opportunity to generate lasting economic activity that does not over-burden the environment and waste our limited resources.

The Green Enterprise: Innovation for a Circular Economy programme provides funding to companies and other organisations that want to stimulate and implement circular economy practices in Ireland.”

As Irish businesses look ahead, they need to align with consumer demand for less resource intensive products and services. Green Enterprise is a key support for this transformation and is tailored to stimulate innovation for sustainable products and services.

Our Green Enterprise programme supports innovators to develop & demonstrate circular initiatives to drive growth and secure the future for Ireland’s SMEs

Applications are invited from businesses within the Food, Construction & Demolition, Plastics and Resources & Raw Materials sector for projects that aim to increase efficiency of materials and avail of opportunities for reuse & recycling to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Mary Frances Rochford, Programme Manager, EPA Office of Environmental Sustainability said: “Developing the circular economy is a strong and effective climate action.

“The circular economy is a cornerstone of the EU Green Deal, which is transforming Europe’s economy towards a sustainable future and empowering our commitments to be climate-neutral by 2050. Our Green Enterprise programme supports innovators to develop & demonstrate circular initiatives to drive growth and secure the future for Ireland’s SMEs.”

A ‘circular’ economy reduces waste throughout the economic cycle, and ensures that materials are used efficiently.  The transition to a circular economy will create opportunities for innovative organisations to build new businesses based on avoiding use of disposable items; extending product lifetimes; and finding new uses for by-products.

Innovation improves competitiveness and fosters new business opportunities and so is core to growth and development of small and medium-sized enterprises.

This programme is an important driver of Ireland’s move to a more circular economy and supports SMEs and other organisations to transform their business models.

Green Enterprise: Innovation for a Circular Economy is a flagship initiative of Ireland’s National Waste Prevention Programme. Further information on the National Waste Prevention Programme and the funding call Green Enterprise – Innovation for a Circular Economy is available on the EPA website.

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