Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

Programme funding

EUR 500 million

Official Journal Reference

C 115 of 1990-05-09

Legislative Reference

To reduce the pollution of coastal areas, particularly in the Mediterranean regions, promote the planning of land use in coastal areas, contribute to the better control and management of toxic and hazardous industrial waste, strengthen know-how relating to the design and management of facilities for reducing pollution, and, more generally, to improve the ways in which environmental problems are tackled.


For the period 1989-1993, resources amounting to more than ECU 60 billion are available, via the three European Funds (ERDF, ESF, EAGGF-Guidance section), for the structural actions of the Community. The major part of these resources is allocated to the Community Support Frameworks (CSF), multi-annual agreements signed between Member States and the Commission of the European Communities, on the basis of which operational programmes can be implemented. In addition, ECU 5.5 billion have been reserved for Community Initiatives, and ECU 300 million for Pilot Projects.

ENVIREG is one of the Community Initiatives, complementary to the Community Support Frameworks. It was adopted by the Commission on 2 May 1990 under Article 11 of Council Regulation (EEC) No 4253/88 (Official Journal No L 374 of 31.12.1988).

The specific function of ENVIREG is to link the environment to regional development, in order to contribute to the reduction of economic and social inequalities in the Community. The purpose is also to promote at regional level the application of the Community's environmental policies.

ENVIREG complements the Community-based actions of the MEDSPA programme, which operates in non-Member EC countries and in areas of the Community which are not eligible for support from the Structural Funds.


Eligible measures:

- Reducing the pollution of coastal areas:
. The construction or modernization of infrastructures and equipment for the treatment of waste water;
. The construction of infrastructures, and equipment involved in the collection, treatment, storage, recycling and disposal of solid waste in urban areas;
. Studies, soil analyses, technical assistance, agricultural extension services and demonstration projects relating to the agricultural use of compost and sludge from urban sewage;
. Port installations for storing and treating ship's ballast and washing or bilge water originating from shipping, containing oily residues and other chemical substances;

- Land-use planning for coastal areas:
. The costs of studies leading to regional land-use plans for coastal areas;
. Schemes to protect biotopes while providing for the development of tourism;
. Studies, technical assistance and demonstration schemes for the protection of biotopes in relation to agriculture.

- Control and management of toxic and hazardous industrial waste:
. The construction of infrastructures and productive investments related to the collection, treatment, storage and recycling of hazardous or toxic industrial waste and of sludge from sewage;
. Studies to identify industrial activities giving rise to pollution, and the costs of experts' fees for reports on ways of reducing the production of industrial waste and on making production processes more efficient in terms of the consumption of water and raw materials;

- Strengthening of know-how in connection with the above actions:
. Feasibility studies and other analyses designed to determine the most appropriate treatment process;
. The launching of service centres to assist local authorities in selecting, installing and maintaining plants and equipment, and the establishment of bodies linking regional authorities in order to improve environmental management;
. Actions to facilitate the transfer of know-how between regional experts;
. The training of professionals involved in actions related to the aims of this initiative.


The Commission is responsible for the implementation of the programme. Authorities responsible for individual ENVIREG operational programmes and those in charge of projects within these can call on a network of experts set up by the Commission. In addition, a Monitoring Committee is established for each operational programme.

The ENVIREG operational programmes are financed jointly by the Member States and by the Community. The total contribution of the Structural Funds during the period 1990-1993 is estimated at ECU 500 million. Loans from the European Investment Bank may also be made available. The amount of Community support depends on the importance of the problems in the fields covered by ENVIREG and on the quality of the programmes.

Priority is given to areas facing rapid economic growth which has led to serious environmental problems, and to areas faced with major population increases during the summer period. To reduce coastal pollution, joint projects between local authorities are given priority. For treatment of water and urban waste, priority is granted to towns with fewer than 100,000 inhabitants.

Eligible areas:
- As regards the reduction of pollution and land-use planning and related know-how: coastal areas covered by Objective 1 of the Structural Funds (regions whose development is lagging behind), and Mediterranean coastal areas covered by Objective 2 (declining industrial regions) and Objective 5b (lagging rural areas). Coastal area means a zone starting from the coastline not more than 10 kms deep, except in duly justified cases;
- As regards toxic and hazardous industrial waste and related know-how: all regions covered by Objective 1.

Member States, taking into account proposals from regional and local authorities, were invited to submit final proposals for operational programmes by 9.11.1990 ("Notice to the Member States laying down guidelines for operational programmes, which Member States are invited to establish within the framework of a Community initiative concerning the environment", Official Journal No C 115 of 9.5.1990). Individual projects may still be submitted to the relevant local authorities, provided that they fit in with the operational programme adopted for the region concerned.
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