What is the Certification for Sustainable Tourism (CST)?

The Certification for Sustainable Tourism (CST) is a program that seeks to categorize and certify each tourism company according to the degree to which its operations comply to a model of sustainability.

It is a program designed by the Costa Rican Tourism Institute (ICT) INCAE Business Institute, Ministry of Environment and Energy (MINAE) and other institutions, aimed for tourist lodging companies, companies dedicated to gastronomy, tour operators, car rentals, and theme parks. The program is designed to categorize and differentiate companies according to their sustainability.

ICT Structure for the Certification for Sustainable Tourism



  • ICT advertising linked to national campaign.
  • Total or partial exemption on the registration for international trade shows.
  • CST brand in promotional material identifies them as a sustainable company.
  • Inclusion in to advertise certified companies.
  • ICT assistance in the Sustainability Programs’ Process.
  • INA training in sustainability for internal clients.
  • CST brand for free.

You can visit the CST official site here

  • We contribute to the natural, cultural, social and economic environment in a local, national and international level.
  • We respect the planet’s biodiversity.
  • We discourage feeding wildlife in the visited areas, as well as the introduction and removal of species that are not native to the region.
  • We minimize our impact on the environment by implementing programs that contribute to sustainable, natural and cultural balance.
  • We use products and materials that are not harmful to the environment.
  • We promote respect and commitment with our staff, providing a healthy environment that takes into account their physical and mental well-being, in an ethical, professional and trustworthy work environment.
  • We train our internal and external partners in sustainable practices to integrate them into our programs and specific actions.
  • We are against sexual harassment and abuse.
  • We believe in equal opportunities for people.
  • We promote respect for our cultural heritage as well as a responsible visit from our clients to the different areas.
  • We encourage the purchase of local handcrafts as long as they are not derived from endangered species.
  • We offer a lifetime experience to our customers by inviting them to join our efforts in sustainability.
  • We encourage visitors to preserve the natural and cultural resources, and to contribute to the social and economic development of the community.
  • We support community groups dedicated to the conservation of natural resources and social causes.
  • We urge internal, external contributors and the whole community to join our continuous improvements to make this a healthier world.

1. Water Management Program

Water resource is always a priority for life on Earth and for OCOTEA TOURS & TRANSFERS is no exception. Although the property where the office is located is small, it has a local water meter to measure the volume of water consumed per month and to propose goals for saving more water.

Actions Undertaken

  • Installing signs to remind internal and external users of the proper use of water.
  • Promoting awareness to our collaborators on the issue of saving water and good deeds.
  • We check for any leaks or breakdowns and repair them promptly.
  • Water consumption is recorded monthly, using the water meter places in the property by the supplier and that way verify the proper use of water and to ensure there are no leaks.
  • The company car washing is done with hoses with water saving nozzles.
  • We encourage tourists to practice water conservation in personal needs, and while visiting the various destinations.

2. Energy Management Program

In Costa Rica, electricity is mainly generated by alternative sources, mainly hydroprower. Therefore, the consumer must be aware and conscious of the importance of water and energy resources.

For OCOTEA TOURS & TRANSFERS it is very important to strengthen the optimal use of electric resource through best practices, staff training, and a preventive maintenance program for the electrical system in the office.

Actions Undertaken

  • Installation of signs that remind and encourage energy saving in the office.
  • Replacing conventional lighting with low consumption fluorescent lamps in the office.
  • Setting a goal of reducing the amount of Kw/hr consumed at least 2% annually and mainly during the dry season when water flow decreases and the country uses thermal energy, causes more pollution and is also more expensive.
  • Staff training in the proper use of electricity through good practices so it can transcend the office and into their homes. These include energy savings on electronics and unplugging electrical equipment at night or other times of no use.
  • Tourists are invited to contribute to the efficient use of electrical appliances and to turning off lights, fans and air conditioners when not in use during their vacation.
  • Preventive maintenance is performed on electrical systems.
  • There is a registration system for breakdowns, monitoring and recording of electricity consumption in the office.

3. Solid Waste Management

Proper management of solid waste is essential for all tourism. Costa Rica has developed great efforts to conduct proper management of domiciliary, business and industrial solid waste. These are key actions, especially in districts like Monteverde, that has experiences an economical transition from farming to tourism industry over the past 30 years.

Actions Undertaken

  • Reduction of waste producing sources, such as suppliers that use less packaging or are environmentally friendly.
  • Solid wastes are rinsed and properly separated for recycling.
  • Solid wastes are reused if possible.
  • Solid wastes are delivered in the collecting center in Monteverde, where the type and weight is registered.
  • Staff is properly informed of the proper management of solid wastes, encouraging them to propose other efforts to reduce and recolect wastes.

Other activities

  • Control of solid waste through a recycled material count sheet.
  • In the office there are two containers to place plastic and aluminum waste, two of the main wastes produced by tourists during the tours.
  • Organic waste are treated for making compost, which is used as fertilizer for the plants in the garden.
  • Paper and cardboard wastes produced in our office is divided in two containers, one for re-utilizing the blank side and the second for paper used on both sides and provided to artisans for their artwork.

4. Internal Collaborators Training Program

The human resource can make the company achieve the desired success, or otherwise may cause the company to lose credibility, prestige and reliability. Human resource is definitely the most important asset for a company.

To OCOTEA TOURS & TRANSFERS employee training is a priority, so every two months training sessions are provided in topics related to their work, good environmental practices, emergency plans, and other subjects.

Actions Undertaken

  • OCOTEA TOURS & TRANSFERS started the process for the CST (Certification for Sustainable Tourism) and the Strategic Plan, in order to inform its collaborators on the company work.
  • Speeches on various topics: Customer Service, Code of Conduct against Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children and Adolescents, Good sociocultural and environmental practices, Costa Rican legislation, Inclusive Tourism, Solid Waste Management, Certification of Sustainable Tourism, Company Sustainability Plan, among others.
  • Special activities to celebrate commemorative dates, with internal employees and their families.
  • All information from the trainings is recorded in a digital file of the company as well as its corresponding physical record.

5. Sociocultural Management Program

Cultural events represent the heart of its people and reinforce the traditions and idiosyncrasy of a community and nation. These practices contribute to providing a clear picture to tourists on the way people live, their values, beliefs and their essence.

OCOTEA TOURS & TRANSFERS belongs to a family, original from the community of Monteverde and supports the preservation of local events through their participation in social, sports and recreational activities.

Actions Undertaken

  • Tourists are encouraged to visit local souvenir shops, among these stands CASEM through the website.
  • We inform our clients, neighborsinternal and external collaborators of the cultural events that take place in the area through the use of the website, Facebook, newsletter, and bulletin board.
  • There is a budget assigned for donations or financial contributions to support local initiatives with social purposes.
  • The Manager of the company is part of the Board of the Monteverde Community Fund, institution that works for the community and promotes social welfare.
  • We continually sponsor and collaborate in recreational or sport activities organized by committees or other groups, such as the Eco Bike Race and the Cloud Forest Race.
  • We contribute to social welfare institutions, Rainbow of Life Elder Associations and the Monteverde Church.

OCOTEA TOURS & TRANSFERS willingly cooperates in different environmental and cultural activities in the community through outreach, monetary contribution, or delivery of materials.

6. Collaborating Companies Information Program

The company has developed various activities to spread its Sustainability Plan and progress in this area.

During the working sessions, we have had the participation of companies and organizations related to tourism and that are linked in some way or another with OCOTEA TOURS & TRANSFERS.

Actions Undertaken

  • Induction on sustainability and Code of Conduct against Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children and Adolescents on November 2013.
  • Creation of material to inform partner companies.

7. Code of Conduct Program

With the increasing global development, the procreation of illegal activities that threaten human integrity has been facilitated. Unfortunately, one of the trampolines or vehicles for these unacceptable practices is the tourism industry.

OCOTEA TOURS & TRANSFERS is aware of this situation and has agreed to join forces against this social scourge. The integrity of every person must be guaranteed, especially when it comes to minors.

The Code of Conduct Program for Tourism aims to raise awareness, prevent, teach, report and monitor any action against commercial sexual exploitation of children and adolescents.

Actions Undertaken

  • Training process for our staff by PANIAMOR specialists.
  • Creation of the company Policy and Procedures Manual in case of suspicion or accusation in a case of commercial sexual exploitation of a minor.
  • Training process for internal and external partners on the subject.

8. Safety, Emergency and Natural Disaster Program

The safety of our clients is a very important for OCOTEA TOURS & TRANSFERS. Our Safety, Emergency and Natural Disaster Program represents another step that the company offers for well-being of our customers and partners in their daily activities. This is managed with the assistance of the National Risk Prevention and Emergency Response Commission to events caused by a natural disaster, and emergency response related to the health of people (customers and partners) together with the Costa Rican Red Cross and the private company Monteverde Emergencies.

Actions undertaken (completed)

  • Creation of an Emergency Response Plan based on the guidelines established by the Health Ministry.
  • Promotion of the company Plan for internal employees.
  • Installation of Emergency Exit and Security Zone signs.
  • Installation and signaling for the extinguisher (properly charged) in the office and in each vehicle.
  • Reconditioning of a first aid kit for the office and in each vehicle.
  • Training of partners with the support of the National Emergency Commission and the Monteverde Red Cross.
  • Implementation of an emergency drill with internal partners, following the guidelines of the National Risk Prevention and Emergency Response Commission, and with the support of the Monteverde Red Cross.
  • Tourist safety tips and practical advice are provided during their stay in the country through the company website.

9. Inclusion of External Clients into the Company Sustainability Efforts

One of the most important goals for OCOTEA TOURS & TRANSFERS is to encourage and invite our customers to join our sustainability efforts.

To do this, information is provided through different media (Facebook, web page, newsletters and bulletin board) on the sustainability activities, programs and projects carried out, in order to attract interest in contributing to the actions developed.

Ocotea Tours & Transfers offers a synthesis of the Costa Rican legislation related to tourism activities, which aims to ensure the protection of the natural, social and cultural resources.

Our goal is to ensure that tourism activities preserve the country’s resources for present and future generations, through knowledge and respect for the laws of Costa Rica.

Archaeological Heritage Act No. 6703

It provides Costa Ricans and the State, the necessary tools to ensure a healthy and ecologically balanced environment, minimizing damage to the environment and regulating individual or collective human activities (public and private). This law establishes the National Environmental Secretary Technical Office, which assesses environmental impact studies submitted. Any damage to the environment is considered a crime by acts or omissions made by natural or legal persons.

Wildlife Conservation Law No. 7317

This law establishes regulations on wildlife and prohibits:

  • Hunting, fishing and harvesting endangered wildlife, except those activities done in registered hatcheries or nurseries.
  • Trading or taking flora and fauna.
  • Exporting, importing or taking any endangered wildlife species.

National Law of Archaeological Heritage No. 6703

It aims to protect the national cultural heritage of different ethnic groups in the country. The national archaeological heritage consists of the movable or immovable property, resulting from prior or contemporaneous indigenous groups in the country, as well as the human remains, and flora and fauna associated with these cultures. This law creates the National Archaeological Commission and the Public Registry of National Archaeological Heritage (branch of the National Museum).

Law on the maritime zone

This law protects the maritime zone, natural resources by the State, its institutions and all the inhabitants of the country. The maritime zone is made up of: the public and restricted areas, both towards to preservation of its resources. It is a crime to exploit existing flora or fauna, mangroves and/or building within it.

Narcotics, psychotropic substances, unauthorized drugs, related activities, money laundering and terrorist financing Law (Law No. 8204)

It regulates the prevention, supply, prescription, administration, handling, use, possession, traffic and selling of narcotics, psychotropic substances, inhalants and other drugs that can produce physical or psychological dependency.

This law also regulates the lists of narcotics, psychotropic substances and similar lawful substances, defined by the Ministry of Health and Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock (MAG) who are responsible for their regulation. The legislation regulates the control, inspection and supervision of the activities related to inhalants or drugs, as well as the products, materials and chemical substances involved in the production of such substances; subject to what has been ordered this matter in the General Health Act.

The State declares of public interest the adoption of the necessary measures to prevent, control, investigate, or suppress any illicit activity on the subject of this Act.

Law against Sexual Harassment in the Workplace and in Education No. 7476

Its aim is to prohibit and punish sexual harassment as discriminatory practices based on gender, against the dignity of women and men in labor and teaching relations. It is based on the constitutional principles of respect for freedom and human life, the right to work, and the principle of equality. The State is obliged to discrimination due to gender. Every company is required to ensure the provisions of this law.

Cultural-actOcotea Tours & Transfers invites you to attend the main celebrations to be held in Costa Rica and the Monteverde Area

New Years Eve Jan 1st
Farmers Fair Every saturday
World Wetlands Day February 2nd
Anniversary of Conservationist Association of Monteverde And Children’s Eternal Rainforest February 11th
Guides Day February 21st
Wildlife Day March 3rd
International Women’s Day March 8th
Battle of Santa Rosa March 20th
World Day of The Water March 22nd
Holy Week April 1st-8th
Battle of Rivas April 11th
Domingo De Ramos April 13th
Holy Monday April 14th
Holy Tuesday April 15th
Holy Wednesday April 16th
Holy Thursday April 17th
Holy Friday April 18th
Saturday of Glory April 19th
Easter Sunday April 20th
Easter Monday, Festive In Some Communities April 21st
Earth Day April 22th
Labor Day May 1rst
International Day For Biological Diversity May 22nd
World Environment Day June 05th
National Tree Day June 15th
Cloud Forest Race April
National Wildlife Day June 23rd
Ecobike July 08th
Annexation of Guanacaste July 25th
Day of Our Lady of The Angels (Patron of Costa Rica) August 2nd
Festivities August
Mother´S Day August 15th
National Parks Day August 24th
Independence Day September 15th
National Health Week September
International Day For The Preservation of The Ozone Layer September 16th
World Habitat Day October 3rd
World Animal Day October 4th
Day of Cultures October 12th
All Soul´S Day November 2nd
Volunteering Day December 5th
International Day of The Mountains December 11th
Christmas “Posadas” December 16th-24th
Christmas December 25th
Monteverde Brilla Festival December
Christmas Bird Count December
Moon Run December
Christmas Fair December

Recommendations for tourists who visit protected areas and other ecotourism sites in Costa Rica:

  • Observe the general and specific regulations of each protected wildlife area.
  • Comply with the schedule.
  • Maintain and leave clean the facilities that were used.
  • Visitors can only walk through authorized routes and paths and can only enter the areas that the National System of Conservation Areas intended for public use, respecting the signs, notices, fences and signposts.
  • Obey the verbal and written safety rules, these are mandatory.
  • Respect the Code of Conduct for the Protection of Children from Sexual and Commercial Exploitation associated with travel and tourism.
  • Respect the cultural heritage of the visited areas.

It is prohibited:

  • Throwing waste of any kind in the environment (rivers, sea, forest, facilities, etc.).
  • Smoking in public areas.
  • Damaging infrastructure, vegetation, animals and other resources of the area.
  • Deforesting and removing wood from the forest and around campfires for purposes of any kind.
  • Feeding wildlife in the visited areas, as well as introducing species that are not native to the region.
  • Exceeding the volume of stereos, tape recorders, radios or other sound equipment.
  • Causing scandals or having morally offensive conducts.
  • Consuming alcohol and other drugs in accordance with the provisions of the Law on Psychotropic Substances. Where it is evident that a person is under the effect of these products, admission will be denied or will be expelled from the area.
  • Entering weapons of any kind, machetes and other implements for gold mining or extraction of other products or interests.
  • Fishing within areas of the System, except in those cases, as stated in Article 10 of Law 6084.
  • Entering with pets of any kind.
  • Hunting, removing objects or materials, of any size, in accordance with current legislation, Law No. 6084, 7317, 7174 and other related laws.
  • Performing political, commercial or other forms of propaganda within the boundaries of the national parks and/or biological reserves.
  • Failing to comply any of the rules, guidelines or recommendations issued by the officers of the National System in the Conservation Areas, empowers officials to expel visitors from the protected wildlife areas.

Be a nature responsible tourist:

  • Contribute to the conservation of biodiversity, obeying the rules and regulations on the protected areas.
  • Contribute to saving water and energy while visiting your tourist destinations, by responsable usage of water, turning off lights, air conditioners and fans when you leave the room.
  • Support the policy of delaying the towel washing and bedding that many of the hotels in the country have, which saves water, energy and decreases the amount of detergent that are used.
  • Implement the separation of solid waste, and use fabric or cloth bags instead of plastic bags when shopping, and if you use plastic bags reuse them.
  • Promote the purchase policy of environmentally friendly products.

Be a social responsible tourist:

  • Preferably purchase products and services developed or manufactured by local small businesses, specially those that are not made ​​based on endangered species or have a negative impact on the environment.
  • Stay in hotels that contribute to the community development. Attend cultural and social activities organized by the communities as another way of contributing to its development.
  • Be part of the Monteverde Community Fund initiative to raise funds in order to contribute to the socioeconomic and cultural welfare of the Monteverde area.

OCOTEA TOURS & TRANSFERS gives you some safety tips and practical advice to make your stay as pleasant as possible:

  • In case of emergency, call 911.
  • Plan your trip in advance, select the routes where you will travel and carry a map.
  • If you have children, keep an eye on them, especially young children.
  • Wait for the bus in well-lit places and preferably where there are more people.
  • Walk in safe places, do not take shortcuts or solitary roads.
  • If you are assaulted or if you are a victim of criminals, remember: “your life is first”, do not fight back.
  • Travel with a photocopy of your passport, keep the original copy, airplane ticket and other valuables in a safe place.
  • If you use public transportation (bus, taxi, etc..), Travel on the public highway or visit places like fairs, shops, do not use items of value.
  • If you take a taxi, look for those marked with yellow triangles on the doors and tariff meter, this indicates that there is a company behind the service.
  • If you use your own vehicle or a rented one, leave the doors and windows closed before leaving. Avoid leaving valuables in plain view inside the vehicle.
  • Be aware of what happens around you and avoid crowds.
  • Always tell an a friend or family member about your travel plan or itinerary.
  • In restaurants, it is advisable to put bags, backpacks and handbags in view, do not leave them on the floor.
  • Shops, restaurants, hotels and other common places, accept the local currency, U.S. dollars and most credit cards.
  • If you go to the bank to withdraw a significant amount of money, try to have another person accompany you.
  • Try to have another person you know to accompany you when shopping, walking or doing other activities in public places.
  • Keep an eye on your wallet, always keep it hidden.
  • We recommend using low denomination bills; many merchants do not accept $100 or $50 USD, due to the possibility of counterfeiting.
  • Know the Bank’s schedule that you use.
  • Learn about what type of clothing is suitable for the climate that you are visiting.
  • In our country we have potable/drinkable water in most places, but ask the receptionist just to be sure.
  • Under Costa Rican law, sexual harassment, commercial sexual exploitation of children and adolescents, as well as the use of illegal substances are crimes punishable by law.
  • We invite you to be respectful of the cultures you visit.

The Earth’s climate has always undergone changes since the pre-industrial era and continues to do so nowadays.

Scientists have determined that there has always been gradual changes in the Earth’s climate, but the ones that have taken place in recent years have been very dramatic.

Climate change is a variation in the average temperature of the planet, which usually takes thousands of years.

Which gases cause climate change?

Carbon dioxide (CO2) is the most abundant greenhouse gas

  • It is produced by combustion of carbon-based fuels (carbon, gas, diesel, coal, and other petroleum products).
  • Deforestation causes an increment of CO2, since trees capture it as part of their photosynthesis and produce O2.

Methane (CH4) has an impact 21 times greater than CO2

  • This gas is produced by ovens and dryers, forest fires, waste through animal farming like cows, rice plantations, landfills and waste waters.

Chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) are produced entirely by humans

  • It is present in refrigeration and air conditioning systems, evaporation of industrial solvents and production of plastic foam.
  • It remains in the atmosphere between 60 and 400 years.

Nitrogen dioxide (NO2)

  • It is produced by power plants that use coal, car mufflers, animal waste or nitrate contaminated landfills. Another source is the degradation of nitrate-based fertilizers on the soil.

Other gases: water vapor.

How does climate change affect us?

Climate change may cause global temperatures to rise between 1.8°C and 4° C by the end of this century.

Even if all greenhouse gas emissions suddenly stop -something that is not going to happen-, the inertia of the Earth’s climate system is so big, global warming will continue for several decades due to the volume of emissions that have already been released into the atmosphere.

Climate change will cause:

  • Increased temperature of air, land and oceans.
  • Heavier storms, cyclones and hurricanes.
  • Greater floods and more intense droughts.
  • Precipitation patterns and increasingly unpredictable winds.

Climate change and tourism

Despite all the benefits associated with tourism, for it being one of the best ways to distribute wealth among populations, this sector is one of the major contributors to the greenhouse effect.

The gases that cause this weather phenomenon by tourist activities emissions (including air travel), are equivalent to its contribution to the world economy, which is estimated at 5% according to the World Tourism Organization.

Moreover, the tourism sector is one of the economical activities dependent on climate change, because the weather determines the demand in tourism seasonality and influences operating costs such as heating or cooling, irrigation, water and food supply, among others.

It is expected that climate change impacts:

  • Economic expenses primarily on infrastructure, especially in the most vulnerable areas such as coastal areas.
  • Schedule changes negatively affect tourism activities.

In addition, climate change will cause some environmental conditions that may scare away tourists:

  • Forest fires.
  • Contagious diseases.
  • Extreme phenomenon (tropical cyclones).
  • Insect pests or waterborne (jellyfish or algae blooms).

Therefore, companies linked to tourism activities are challenged to implement additional measures to be prepare for emergency situations, which will raise the costs for insurance, back-up systems for water and electricity supply and evacuation, as well as a disruption in the business operation.

These are the two most popular vacation activities being affected currently:

Beach tourism: Erosion by intense storms and the proliferation of algae and jellyfish infestation due to higher sea temperatures.

Winter Sports: The ski resorts have had to deal with the lack of snow and a shorter season. The devastating hurricanes, cyclones, floods and droughts -many times accompanied by violent winds- have become more frequent in recent years.

Climate change and wildlife

Nature, which is one of the main reasons why tourists visit certain destinations, is affected by the increase in temperature.

Climate change causes the loss of wildlife habitat for many organisms and changes migration patterns of some species of whales, birds, butterflies, among others. Therefore, it is expected that the affected areas with fewer species become less attractive to tourists.

Small islands and low-lying coastal areas are at higher risk of any sea level rise which is caused by the melting of the polar ice caps.

Climate change and Monteverde

Research over the last 40 years in Monteverde, brought that the area receives 38% more rain and that 300% of the days are dry. The increase in temperature has caused the clouds to remain at higher elevations and a decrease of the haze that has always characterized the mountain forests.

This situation has caused:

  • More damaged roads.
  • Impact on public health.
  • Affected agricultural activities.
  • Less clouds and more blue skies.
  • Extinction of some species.
  • Altitudinal migration of some species: some species of hummingbirds have moved to higher elevations. This has decreased in the populations of some amphibians and reptiles, sensitive to the decrease of cloudy days, especially lizards and frogs.
  • Changes in precipitation, temperature, cloud cover and light can affect the production of nectar of some plant species, which can affect the abundance and distribution of hummingbirds.

Climate change and marine organisms

Marine organisms are also affected by climate change, since the increase in temperature and CO2 concentration causes a change in the wind pattern, strong hurricanes and waterspouts. In addition, marine currents and acidity are altered, causing also change on the supply of nutrients and the food chain.

Migration and distribution of species of marine species and organisms are altered, and studies have detected the presence of fewer boreal species.

There is a reduction in phytoplankton, zooplankton, fish and algae. Organisms attached to the seabed (benthic) are the most affected.

Most of the world’s coral reefs will die with an increase of only 3°C of the sea temperature, and the multitude of colorful fish and sea creatures living in the reefs would also disappear. Half the coral reefs of the Caribbean, for example, has disappeared since 2005 due to coral bleaching.

Climate change and global initiatives

Due to the critical situation the planet is in, 196 countries part of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change. In December 2014, the last conference was held, their main achievement was the end of the existing division between developed and developing countries since 1992, when the obligations of the countries depended on their level of development.

Lima agreement imposes obligations on countries regardless of whether they are part of the developed countries or not.

The responsibilities of the countries are differentiated according to the respective capabilities and national circumstances.

Climate change in Costa Rica

The contribution of Costa Rica in the production of greenhouse gases is small compared to giants like the US, China, Japan and India, but:

  • In Costa Rica, 70% of greenhouse gases comes from private transport and cargo: there are about 1 million vehicles in the country.
  • MINAET created the Carbon Neutral Program (Programa País Carbono Neutralidad).

Costa Rica aims to achieve carbon neutrality by 2021 through:

  • Financing
  • GHG Mitigation
  • Technology Transfer and Capacity Building
  • System of precise, reliable and measurable metrics (MRV)
  • Public awareness, creating culture and changing consumer habits.
  • Adapting to climate change to reduce the vulnerability of key sectors and regions.

The positive side: Financing the fight against climate change

International cooperation funds projects aimed at preserving the environment, at the same time seeking an economic development. For example, the French Development Agency (AFD), has funded the following projects:

  • Ethiopia: Wind farms.
  • Madagascar: Forest management.
  • Colombia: Clean Urban Transport.
  • Indonesia and Vietnam: National plans on climate.

Organizations like the World Bank and others have begun to use “green bonds or climate bonds”. These bonds are similar to the traditional ones, with the difference that they are asset-backed with investors that contribute to sustainable development and climate mitigation. However, it is necessary to develop measures to ensure certification, since it is a weak spot.

The downside: The myth of zero emissions

“Zero Emissions” is one of the latest solutions that a group of scientists has proposed to counter the emissions from burning coal, oil, and gas that are heating up the planet.

However, this undeveloped technology is controversial because it suggests that the planet can continue to use fossil fuels on a large scale, as long as these emissions are off-set.

It is based on the Bio-energy with carbon capture and storage, which entails planting a huge amount of grass and trees, burning the biomass to generate electricity, capturing the CO2 that is emitted, and pumping it into geological reservoirs underground.

However, it may present the following problems:

  • Gas leaks with serious environmental and social consequences.
  • Appropriation of land for crops from poor people, similar to the way it has happened with biofuels.
  • The use of this methodology implies that around 218-990 million acres should be allocated for the plantation of the foxtail palm tree, in order to capture one billion tons of CO2.
  • High production of nitrous oxide as fertilizers will exacerbate climate change.

These proposals draws attention due to lucrative business involving the production of more than 67,000 million barrels of oil, which is three times the volume of proven oil reserves in the US, according to data from the Energy Department in the US.


Ocotea Tours & Transfers is a local family company dedicated to Ecotourism, Conservation and Environmental Education that operates in harmony with Sustainable Tourism.


We welcome questions as well as inquiries.

(506) 2645-5737



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