Costa Rica has become the first country in the Americas to join the global Green Fin initiative.
The move makes the country the 13th in the world to join the initiative dedicated to implementing environmental standards aimed at reducing the damage to reefs caused by snorkellers and divers.
In Costa Rica, the initiative will be implemented by Misión Tiburón through the National System of Conservation Areas (SINAC). The initiative was initially piloted in one of Costa Rica’s diving and snorkeling hubs in Guanacaste province.
Commenting on the new initiative Ilena Zanella, the director of the Misión Tiburón, stated:
“The diving and snorkelling industry is an important ally to promote conservation practices on our marine and coastal ecosystems. Thanks to the industry’s natural involvement with these ecosystems, threats can be mitigated, and a more sustainable diving and snorkelling industry that follows Green Fins international standards can be established.”
While James Harvey, director of The Reef-World Foundation, stated:
“Marine tourism in Costa Rica is growing fast with high demand from both national and international tourists coming to visit the incredible marine species that the country has to offer. Implementing best practices and guidelines through the Green Fins approach with support from the government of Costa Rica is critical to ensure that this market is sustainably managed, protecting valuable marine ecosystems for years to come. The national team of SINAC and Misión Tiburón have set out ambitious yet realistic targets to achieve a high level of uptake of Green Fins amongst dive and snorkel operators across the country. This will reduce local threats to the marine environment and increase corals and other marine life’s resilience to wider global impacts, including climate change.”