From the Field: Costa Rica points the way to a sustainable world


Costa Rica is one of the winners of the inaugural UN-backed Earthshot Prize, in recognition of the Central American country’s efforts to reverse damage to its environment and develop in a sustainable manner.

Red-eye tree frogs are native to the rain forests of Central America.

Red-eye tree frogs are native to the rain forests of Central America., by UNDP/Adriana Dinu

The award also highlights just how far Costa Rica has come: in the 1990s, the country had the world’s highest global deforestation rates, and less than a quarter of its original forest cover remained, largely due to agricultural expansion and logging.

Since then, policies that encourage sustainable land use practices have proved to be successful in reversing the decline, and today, Costa Rica is one of the only countries in the world to reverse its deforestation, stop biodiversity loss, and increase forest cover to over half its total territory, whilst increasing economic growth.

You can read more about Costa Rica and the Earthshot prize here.

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