• Fernanda Venegas

Costa Rica fighting single use plastic & STYROFOAM

After the alarming 740 pages GEO (Global Environment Overview) report given by UN in Nairobi, Kenya; many nations and organizations embark in one of the biggest and most important mission, trying to save what is left of our planet. According to the 6 years extensive report, where 250 scientists from 70 different countries collaborated.



The increasing gap between rich and poor countries is rising, excess of consumerism, contamination and food waste versus a different reality where poor counties suffer from malnourishment, extreme conditions and lack of access to health care. Although climate change takes a first place among other important problems, such as air pollution, the changes facing the ecosystem, the melting of the polar caps, the overfishing and the overpopulated planet predicted to reach 10.000 million by 2050. The expectations surrounding our future are pessimistic, every single effort is important in the next few years and depends upon the compromise we make as individuals, as companies and as communities.

Costa Rica has always been a country proud for his green actions, last June 5th, Earth Day, the country officially announced the National Strategy to substitute the use of single use plastic for renewable and marine compostable products. In order to make this a reality the social, economic and government actors need to compromise and guarantee the necessary actions to make this green transition a reality.



20% OF THE 4.000 TONS OF GARBAGE PRODUCED DAILY ARE NOT COLLECTED



These initiatives lead by the Costa Rican government, are possible thanks to the coordination between the Ministry of Environment and Energy (MINAET), the Ministry of Health (CCSS), and the technical and economic support given by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).

Another key point is the online platform build http://zonalibredeplastico.org, where individuals and groups can register to be a part of the strategy, compromise and volunteer actions. This site is a way to keep environmental activists in touch and updated, as well as to be able to organize a more efficient impact of green practices around the country. On early July 2019, the law Ley N°9703 one of the biggest steps towards environment, prohibits the production and commercialization of Styrofoam based products.

Although as we say here "what we do with our hands, we erase it with the elbow", a few laws surrounding the environment are being implemented, on the same table projects as mining or the practice of trawling are being discussed and approved by some members of the Nacional Assembly. On top of other issues as the overflowing garbage in rivers, agricultural practices, where land is deforested for mass production, use of pesticides and other chemical products. Leaving a bittersweet taste as to how much we are doing for the environment.


As we walk towards change is important to notice our achievements as well as our areas of improvement, in the verge of a new beginning, re-learning and re wiring our consumption behavior. In the meantime, we all need to take part and action towards changing what it seems to be the final chapter in human history, not necessarily for us but for those inheriting this planet.

To take action visit:

https://www.un.org/en/actnow/

The Lazy Person’s Guide to Saving the World

https://www.un.org/sustainabledevelopment/takeaction/




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Address: 200 meters north from the Police Station. Next to Coco's Rest.

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