Funding Programmes

Financial support for the research, development and application of environmental technologies is provided by a variety of national, federal states-based, regional and local programmes and initiatives in Germany. Depending on the focus of the organisation providing the promotion, grants are provided for projects ranging from basic research through to large-scale projects. At a federal level the Federal Environment Ministry (BMU), Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), Federal Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Consumer Protection (BMELV), and the Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology (BMWi) are mainly responsible for the Cleaner Production promotion programmes.

This section focuses on public subsidy programmes whose aim is to help companies, research institutes and local authorities wishing to invest in the research, development, application and distribution of innovative, environmental friendly technologies.


Advisory Assistance for Environmental Protection in Central and Eastern Europe, the Caucasus and Central Asia (BHP)

The Advisory Assistance Programme of the German Federal Environment Ministry is supporting the new neighbours east and southeast of the EU (western Balkans, Republic of Moldavia, Ukraine) and countries of the Caucasus and Central Asia in implementing the bilateral environmental agreements concluded with Germany and introducing ambitious environmental standards. Cooperation with the Russian Federation forms a separate priority. The Federal Environment Agency is responsible for managing the programme on behalf of the Federal Environment Ministry.


EnEff:Stadt und EnEff:Wärme - Research for Energy Efficiency

In addition to the energetic optimisation of individual buildings, the aim of raising energy efficiency depends crucially on a comprehensive approach to urban areas as well as to local and district heating networks . This potential can be improved significantly via intelligent use and networking of innovative technologies with research and pilot projects. “Efficient Energy Use” plays a crucial role. The Federal Ministry of Economics and Energy therefore promotes research on energy efficient cities (EnEff:Stadt) and energy efficient heating and cooling networks (EnEff:Wärme).


Environmental Innovation Programme (UIP)

The Federal Environment Ministry provides funds from the Environmental Innovation Programme to promote large-scale projects within Germany which for the first time demonstrate ways of preventing or reducing environmental pollution by means of innovative technological processes or novel process combinations, and also ways of producing and using environmentally sound products. The funded projects represent an advanced state of technology and can be transferred to similar systems operated by other users. As a rule, such projects are funded by subsidising the interest on a loan from the KfW banking group. The various Federal Environment Agency (UBA) departments assess and support the projects from a technical point of view.

Funding Data Base of the Federal Government

The Funding Data Base issued by the Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology (BMWi) gives a comprehensive overview of research programmes, of the federal level, the Länder and the EU for industry. It contains the full text version of all calls and additional information (in German).

Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM)

The objective of the funding measure is the successful technology and knowledge transfer in the field of sustainable water management in selected developing and emerging countries. An important contribution with regard to the Millennium Goals of the United Nations is made with the development of integrated planning instruments, the adaptation of water technologies to different climate, economic and societal conditions and the variety of options for vocational training.

Promotion programme for measures for adaptation to climate change (in German)

As part of this programme, the Federal Environment Ministry (BMU) supports projects that strengthen the capacity of key regional and local players (such as local authorities and businesses) to adapt to climate change through initiatives for raising awareness, for dialogue and participation, and for networking and collaboration. At the same time one of the BMU’s primary concerns is to forge strong links between the two areas of climate protection and adaptation to the impact of climate change.

Research Initiative "Future Building"

The research initiative “Future Building” of the Federal Ministry of Transport, Building and Urban Development aims to strengthen the competitiveness of the German building sector in the European internal market and to remove existing deficits particularly in the sector of technical, building cultural and organisational innovations.

Research for energy-optimised construction (EnOB)

The research programme EnOB of the Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology places an emphasis on research and development in construction engineering and technical building equipment, such as low-exergy systems, building elements with vacuum insulation, or innovative glazing and facade systems. A second focus is on scientifically evaluating energy-optimised buildings.

Research funding of the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF)

The BMBF provides financial support for innovative projects and ideas under targeted research funding programmes. The range covers everything from basic scientific research, environmentally friendly sustainable development, new technologies, information and communication technologies, the life sciences, work design; structural research funding at institutions of higher education to innovation support and technology transfer.

The Central Innovation Program SME (Zentrales Innovationsprogramm Mittelstand – ZIM)

The Central Innovation Program SME is a funding program for small and medium sized enterprises (SME) with business operations in Germany that want to develop new or significantly improve existing products, processes or technical services. As the cooperation partner of an SME, public and private non-profit research and technology organisations (RTO) are also eligible. The program is open to all branches and technological sectors. The aim of ZIM is to sustainably increase the innovative capacity and competitiveness of SMEs.