Conservation International Costa Rica


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Conservation International Costa Rica

With more than 30 years of work, Conservation International Costa Rica, through science, innovative policies and work with communities, empowers people to conserve the nature on which their well-being and livelihoods depend.

The first country in the world to reverse deforestation, Costa Rica is showing the world how the protection and restoration of nature is not a burden, but an engine for growth and prosperity.

Since 1990, the country has doubled the size of its forests while tripling its GDP per capita — a feat achieved by no other nation.

Costa Rica has always been ambitious when it comes to conservation for the benefit of the people. The country’s hard work has paid off, and today Costa Rica is betting even harder with its Nationally Determined Contributions (NDC) to the Paris Agreement.

By 2022, 30% of Costa Rica’s ocean will be protected.

Nationally Determined Contributions (NDC) to the Paris Agreement

High Ambition Coalition

By 2025, the country will protect and conserve 100% of coastal wetlands included and reported in the National Wetland Inventory (in 2016-2018).

Nationally Determined Contributions (NDC) to the Paris Agreement

By 2030, Costa Rica will increase the recorded area of coastal wetlands by at least 10%.

Nationally Determined Contributions (NDC) to the Paris Agreement

Costa Rica is committed to explore innovative conservation financing mechanisms, including the potential expansion of payment for ecosystem services models, subject to improvement, to support the implementation of blue carbon targets.

Nationally Determined Contributions (NDC) to the Paris Agreement


Our focus

© Conservation International/photo by Edgardo Ochoa

Marine protection

We need to protect the oceans in order to protect humanity. We are working with businesses, government, local communities and partner organizations, guiding them in the conservation of key marine and coastal ecosystems. We are generating and leveraging significant technical and human capital to support Costa Rica to scale up ocean conservation.

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© Conservation International/Fasdo Azofeifa

Sustainable management of fisheries and aquaculture

Many of the species of commercial interest in Costa Rica are under heavy fishing pressure, and the marine-coastal ecosystems are being extracted daily. Fishing methods, habitat management and consumption choices have a direct impact on the state of our marine resources. We help local communities to receive benefits for their management of Responsible Fishing Marine Areas.

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© Conservation International/Monica Naranjo

Mangrove conservation and blue carbon

Mangroves are vital to local communities by maintaining healthy fisheries, and protecting them from storms, and are critical to overcoming climate change. We are providing a model for the restoration and conservation of blue carbon mangrove forests in Costa Rica. We have led the largest mangrove restoration project in the history of Costa Rica in the Estero de Puntarenas National Wetland.

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Mangrove conservation has offered alternative livelihoods and leadership roles to women in coastal areas of Costa Rica. With the support of the Swarovski Foundation, we have: -Restored degraded mangrove areas and improved mangrove conservation -Strengthened the leadership of the women of Chira Island -Promoted sustainable alternative livelihoods

People need nature

We believe nature must be conserved to ensure all people's livelihood and quality of life, especially for those who depend directly on it. Since 1988, Conservation International in Costa Rica has worked to protect nature. Through cutting-edge science, innovative policy, and global reach, we empower people to protect the nature that we rely on for food, freshwater, and livelihoods.

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Meet the team

Driven by their passion and expertise, they make it all possible.


Conservation International Costa Rica

Regional and global staff based in Costa Rica