Horizon Europe

Horizon Europe Mission Area: Healthy oceans, seas, coastal and inland waters

Read on to learn about the Horizon Europe, ‘Healthy oceans, seas, coastal and inland waters’ mission area.

Mission area: Healthy oceans, seas, coastal and inland waters background and aim

What are Horizon Europe missions and mission areas?

EU missions are commitments to solve major societal challenges like fighting cancer, adapting to climate change, protecting our oceans, living in greener cities and ensuring soil health and food.

As an integral part of the Horizon Europe framework programme beginning in 2021, they are a new way to deliver on these commitments.

Each mission will operate as a portfolio of actions – such as research projects, policy measures or even legislative initiatives – to achieve a measurable goal that could not be achieved through individual actions. The missions will contribute to the goals of the European Green Deal, Europe’s Beating Cancer Plan as well as the Sustainable Development Goals.

About the Horizon Europe mission area: Healthy oceans, seas, coastal and inland waters

The oceans, coastal and inland waters are home to the richest biodiversity and the most prominent life support system on our planet. Besides the ecological values, they also provide benefits closely related to our daily life. As the planet’s largest carbon sink, the condition of these water systems is critical for us when combating climate change.

Horizon Europe Healthy Oceans aims to increase citizens’ awareness of the importance of healthy oceans, oceans, coastal and inland waters through scientific research and help formulate solutions to a series of problems to restore our oceans and waters’ health.

By 2030, this mission will:

  1. Fill the knowledge and emotional gap;
  2. Regenerate marine and freshwater ecosystems;
  3. Reach zero pollution;
  4. Decarbonise our ocean and waters;
  5. Revamp governance.

Timeline of the mission area: Healthy oceans, seas, coastal and inland waters

  • In September 2020, the Mission Board handed in the final recommendations to the European Commission
  • A preparatory phase to decide upon detailed actions, investment strategy and performance indicators began in November 2020 and lasted 12 months.
  • In the last half-year of 2021, the mission was officially launched and enter the implementation phase.


The proposed mission will be implemented via different approaches and actions, read more on this in our blog post on Mission Starfish 2030: Towards healthy oceans.

Horizon Europe Missions Overview

Read more about Horizon Europe

Visit the European Commission overview page for ‘Healthy oceans, seas, coastal and inland waters


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