EPA Research calls

EPA Research funding is principally provided via the competitive annual EPA Research calls. This funding is aimed at:

  • Addressing medium to longer-term policy needs with desk studies, medium-scale, large-scale and capacity development projects funded using top-down (where specific research questions have been identified) and bottom-up (open calls) approaches; and
  • Capacity building with the funding of research fellowships

The annual EPA Research call is announced between April and June each year with awards made in November/December.

Funding opportunities

EPA Research Call 2021

The EPA is seeking proposals from the research community to help identify solutions to climate change and other emerging and complex environmental problems. With up to €10.5 million available for new research projects, the funding will be provided under the four EPA Research 2030 interconnected research hubs:

  • Addressing climate change evidence needs
  • Facilitating a green and circular economy
  • Delivering a healthy environment
  • Protecting and restoring our natural environment

The EPA Research Programme is a Government of Ireland initiative funded by the Department of the Environment, Climate and Communications. The Research Call highlights the importance of a clean, healthy and well-protected environment for our health, our wellbeing and our quality of life. It is designed to support the design and implementation of environmental policies in Ireland.

Innovative research proposals are invited in response to 46 research topics (view the list of topics). The new research projects are expected to start in late 2021/early 2022 and will range from 12-month to multi-annual research projects.

Important: Changes have been made to the EPA’s Online Grant Application system as well as to the EPA’s Funding Rules. Potential applicants are encouraged to familiarise themselves with the new layout, new application form and templates, as well as revised funding rules.

Call documentation

Important: The new EPA website will be launched in late May/early June 2021. This will affect all www.epa.ie hyperlinks included in our call documentation. The EPA Research Call 2021 documentation will be re-published with amended hyperlinks on the new EPA website.

View more information on:

All queries MUST be submitted to research@epa.ie

Timeframe

The indicative timeframe is as follows:

DateDeadline Type
Wednesday 19th May 2021 at 11:00 GMT Call opening
Wednesday 7th July 2021 at 17:00 GMT Deadline for queries relating to the technical contents of this call
Wednesday 14th July 2021 at 17:00 GMT Submission deadline
Wednesday 21st July 2021 at 17:00 GMT Approval deadline
July/September 2021 Evaluation process
October/November 2021 Negotiation1
November/December 2021 Grant award of successful projects
By 31st March 2022 Start of successful projects

1 The EPA consider calling the shortlisted applicants for interview at this stage.

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Application process

Applications must be made online at https://epa.smartsimple.ie

You will also need to refer to the following documentation, which is available to download from the EPA’s Online Grant Management and Application Portal or from the EPA website:

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Call Topic ReferenceCall Topic TitlesMax Budget (€) Per ProjectCo-funded by
Addressing the Climate Change Evidence Needs 2021 Call Topic 1

Analysis of terrestrial GHG emissions and removals and wider impacts of land management and peatland restoration on Ireland’s Carbon and Nitrogen Cycles. Fellowship 1. Carbon Dioxide

€300,000 DAFM
Addressing the Climate Change Evidence Needs 2021 Call Topic 2

Analysis of terrestrial GHG emissions and removals and wider impacts of land management and peatland restoration on Ireland’s Carbon and Nitrogen Cycles. Fellowship 2. Methane

€300,000 DAFM
Addressing the Climate Change Evidence Needs 2021 Call Topic 3

Analysis of terrestrial GHG emissions and removals and wider impacts of land management and peatland restoration on Ireland’s Carbon and Nitrogen Cycles. Fellowship 3. Nitrous Oxide

€300,000 DAFM
Addressing the Climate Change Evidence Needs 2021 Call Topic 4 Scenarios analysis to inform pathways for negative emissions to achieve climate neutrality by 2050 €350,000 DAFM
Addressing the Climate Change Evidence Needs 2021 Call Topic 5 Critical infrastructure interdependencies and effects of climate change - Design for full-scale study €100,000 n/a
Addressing the Climate Change Evidence Needs 2021 Call Topic 6 Behaviour change among retail and servicing actors in the transport sector €100,000 n/a
Addressing the Climate Change Evidence Needs 2021 Call Topic 7 Climate resilient development pathways for Ireland €250,000 DAFM/DoT
Addressing the Climate Change Evidence Needs 2021 Call Topic 8 Transboundary and International climate impacts and synergies €100,000 DoT
Addressing the Climate Change Evidence Needs 2021 Call Topic 9 Top-down assessment of GHG emissions and removals from agriculture and land using advanced observation systems (Integrated Carbon Observation System, ICOS) €300,000 DAFM
Addressing the Climate Change Evidence Needs 2021 Call Topic 10 Industrial transition and national development in the context of achievement of the 2050 climate neutrality goal €100,000 n/a
Addressing the Climate Change Evidence Needs 2021 Call Topic 11 Development of Ireland specific shared socio-economic pathways (SSPs) in the context of national and EU climate policy and analysis systems using international analysis data €400,000 DAFM
Addressing the Climate Change Evidence Needs 2021 Call Topic 12 Development of Nitrous Oxide emissions verification system for Ireland €600,000 DAFM
Addressing the Climate Change Evidence Needs 2021 Call Topic 13 Factors influencing just resilience and wellbeing €100,000 DoT

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Facilitating a green and circular economy

Call Topic ReferenceCall Topic TitlesMax Budget (€) Per ProjectCo-funded by
Facilitating a Green and Circular Economy 2021 Call Topic 1 Identify the regulatory levers needed to develop new markets for renewable carbon €100,000 n/a
Facilitating a Green and Circular Economy 2021 Call Topic 2 ‘By-product’ material as a nationally useful secondary raw material via the by-product regulatory mechanism €100,000 DAFM
Facilitating a Green and Circular Economy 2021 Call Topic 3 Recovered waste as a nationally useful secondary raw material via the end-of-waste regulatory mechanism €100,000 DAFM
Facilitating a Green and Circular Economy 2021 Call Topic 4 Circular business models for Ireland €350,000 n/a
Facilitating a Green and Circular Economy 2021 Call Topic 5 Edible packaging, opportunities to prevent waste including microplastic arising from plastic and cardboard €100,000 n/a
Facilitating a Green and Circular Economy 2021 Call Topic 6 Explore ‘Best Practice’ 'Natural Branding' technologies to reduce plastic branding on food €100,000 n/a
Facilitating a Green and Circular Economy 2021 Call Topic 7 Identifying the scale of plastic in compost derived from household sources €100,000 n/a
Facilitating a Green and Circular Economy 2021 Call Topic 8 Explore food waste associated with ‘home working’ since 2020 €100,000 n/a
Facilitating a Green and Circular Economy 2021 Call Topic 9 Opportunities of Green Public Procurement (GPP) €200,000 DAFM
Facilitating a Green and Circular Economy 2021 Call Topic 10 Awareness raising tools to address avoidable plastic waste arising from sanitary products and disposable nappies €100,000 n/a
Facilitating a Green and Circular Economy 2021 Call Topic 11 Consumer awareness and behaviour change communications strategy to support sustainable consumption of clothing in Ireland €150,000 n/a
Facilitating a Green and Circular Economy 2021 Call Topic 12 Artificial Intelligence to facilitate the circular economy in Ireland €150,000 n/a
Facilitating a Green and Circular Economy 2021 Call Topic 13 Sustainable and circular bio-based cities - BioCities €500,000 DAFM
Facilitating a Green and Circular Economy 2021 Call Topic 14 Material flows of virgin and recycled plastic resources in the Irish economy €150,000 n/a
Facilitating a Green and Circular Economy 2021 Call Topic 15 The impact of increases in online sales associated with Covid19 pandemic on national waste generation €100,000 n/a
Facilitating a Green and Circular Economy 2021 Call Topic 16 Critical raw materials for Ireland €100,000 n/a

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Delivering a healthy environment

Call Topic ReferenceCall Topic TitlesMax Budget (€) Per ProjectCo-funded by
Delivering a Healthy Environment 2021 Call Topic 1 Public exposure to non-ionising radiation (NIR) from major electricity infrastructure such as the Celtic Interconnector between Ireland and France €100,000 n/a
Delivering a Healthy Environment 2021 Call Topic 2 Chemicals indicators datasets for Ireland €100,000 n/a
Delivering a Healthy Environment 2021 Call Topic 3 Assessing the current state of knowledge of the potential impacts on health and wellbeing from exposure to odour from industrial and waste facilities €100,000 n/a
Delivering a Healthy Environment 2021 Call Topic 4 Review of emerging technologies / novel approaches for detection and quantification of the levels for Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2) €100,000 n/a
Delivering a Healthy Environment 2021 Call Topic 5 An assessment of hazardous chemicals present in sediment and soil in Ireland €350,000 DAFM
Delivering a Healthy Environment 2021 Call Topic 6 Research in support of the Industrial Emissions Directive (IED) Review Process €350,000 n/a
Delivering a Healthy Environment 2021 Call Topic 7 An international best practice review of the localised and wider pollutant contribution of large railway hubs on air quality, in large urban centres €350,000 DoT
Delivering a Healthy Environment 2021 Call Topic 8 What are the feasible and sustainable nature-based options that can be developed further to achieve zero discharge and minimise the adverse impacts on water quality from domestic wastewater discharges? €350,000 n/a
Delivering a Healthy Environment 2021 Call Topic 9 Impact of Irish agricultural activities on air quality in Ireland particularly in relation to the contribution of secondary particulate matter (PM2.5) and its association with ammonia levels €350,000 DAFM
Delivering a Healthy Environment 2021 Call Topic 10 VTEC - Addressing the challenges it poses to our waters and health and wellbeing €500,000 n/a
Delivering a Healthy Environment 2021 Call Topic 11 Assessment of Manganese in our aquatic environment and the impact on drinking water supplies €350,000 n/a

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Protecting and restoring our natural environment

Call Topic ReferenceCall Topic TitlesMax Budget (€) Per ProjectCo-funded by
Protecting and Restoring our Natural Environment 2021 Call Topic 1 Age dating of Irish groundwaters to inform more accurate prediction of the movement of nitrate in groundwater with the goal of improving water quality €500,000 GSI
Protecting and Restoring our Natural Environment 2021 Call Topic 2 Landscapes, catchments and ecosystems:  bringing together knowledge and practice from a range of spatial scales to inform policy €200,000 DAFM
Protecting and Restoring our Natural Environment 2021 Call Topic 3 Development of a toolkit for ex post analysis of public spending on restoration for nature, of derelict or former industrial lands €200,000 n/a
Protecting and Restoring our Natural Environment 2021 Call Topic 4 Enhancing public engagement in the SEA process and development of specific criteria that can be used for analysis of SEA implementation €250,000 OPR
Protecting and Restoring our Natural Environment 2021 Call Topic 5 Water quality improvements arising from the enhanced restoration €500,000 n/a
Protecting and Restoring our Natural Environment 2021 Call Topic 6 The use of innovative as well as available technologies for data analysis and intelligence gathering in support of effective environmental enforcement €100,000 n/a

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