Our connection to and dependency on the community of life

Columbus named Costa Rica after seeing the richness of the coast that the country had in terms of biodiversity. Hundreds of years after Columbus first arrived to this country, scientists today acknowledge that Columbus was right.

Costa Rica, although it is a very small country, has 5% of the world’s known biodiversity, almost 95,000 species of all the six Kingdoms of Life.

Youth taking action
Under the framework of World Environment Day, ECI, in collaboration with the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung, hosted a roundtable with young people from Costa Rica to discuss the current situation of biodiversity in the country, how our society depends on the ecosystems services it provides, and possible solutions to reverse the trend of biodiversity degradation.

Marcello Hernández-Blanco, ECI youth coordinator and expert in biodiversity, also discussed the ethical elements of biodiversity management, and how the Earth Charter principles can provide a strong ethical basis for action in this regard.

The outcome of this roundtable was the identification of the major challenges that Costa Rica faces in terms of biodiversity management, as well as potential solutions to this issue. The following are some of the opinions that young people offered:


  • Social participation
  • Interdisciplinary actions
  • Dialogue processes
  • Funding for biodiversity initiatives

Main solutions

  • Green accounting, going beyond GDP to measure the country’s progress
  • Education for Sustainable Development at all levels of formal and informal education
  • To empower local governments
  • To increase youth participation

ECI will keep supporting young people all over the world interested in developing necessary solutions, empowering them to take local action, to care about the great community of life on which all depend.