Carlos Manuel Rodriguez, a really cool Costa Rican environemntalist won the Blue Moon Fund’s first annual Conservation Leadership Award! The Worldwatch Institute has the great reason why he won the award.
“Rodriguez is credited with implementing a unique conservation policy in Costa Rica, whereby the users of a forestâ€™s environmental services, such as carbon fixation, water, and biodiversity, are required to pay the forestâ€™s owners for these rights. By establishing an economic incentive to maintain forests, Costa Rica was â€œable to start decreasing illegal logging to a rate that was unprecedented in the country,â€ says Rodriguez. Worldwide, the average rate of illegal logging in tropical regions is some 80 percent, while in Costa Rica it is now only some 15 percent, he notes. Costa Rica is probably the first tropical country to reverse the process of deforestation, and there are now twice as many forests in the country than there were 20 years ago, according to Rodriguez.”