Costa Rica Wins 2021 Earthshot Prize for its Successful Environmental Conservation Model
On Sunday, October 17, Costa Rica was awarded the 2021 Earthshot Prize in the Protect and Restore Nature category, bestowed for a country initiative known as the Pago de Servicios Ambientales
(Payment of Environmental Services). Led by MINAE
and by its successful conservation model, the initiative has, since 1997, aided local communities and farm owners.
In acknowledgement of the prize, Earthshot observed, “In the 1990s, the vast forests of Costa Rica were devastated, half their former size. But the people of Costa Rica and their Ministry for Environment had a plan to save them. Its programmes paid citizens to protect forests, plant trees, and restore ecosystems.”
It added, “The results were extraordinary. Costa Rica’s forests doubled in size. Flora and fauna thrived which led to a boom in ecotourism, contributing $4 billion to the economy.”
Prince William of Britain and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, together with the Royal Foundation, announced the prize during an event that united the 15 countries selected as global finalists.
Costa Rica will receive a £1 million (more than $1.3 million) prize.