Geography Costa Rica

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Costa Rica Case Study

Government Action

·         In 1979, Costa Rica passed legislation giving tax deductions and grants to owners of rainforests if they conserved their forest area and used it to benefit society by protecting water resources, biodiversity and scenic beauty. The government issues forest protection certificates and $50 annually for every hectare of forest they protect. 

·         In 1995, the government set up national parks to protect 18% of the country's territory (privately owened reserves protect another 13%): the areas targeted for protection have high biodiversity. The government has decentralised its decision making with regards of protecting the forest and has grouped areas in the country into eco-regions. Each area is allowed to make decisions on how its rainforest will be protected. 

·         In 1997, the government introduced the Certificate for Sustainable Tourism (CST) for businesses to prove their commitment to sustainable tourism - it has five level including how the business looks after the environment. 

NGO Projects

One of these projects is run by FUNDECOR (the Central Volcanic Mountain Development Foundation). Using a $10 million grant from USAID, it works with local landowners to help them manage the rainforest

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