Several organizations have asked the Costa Rican congress not to dismiss the Escazu Agreement and revive its discussion.
The letter sent to the representatives was signed by 21 Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs), 42 groups, and 40 citizens.
The Escazú Agreement’s main objective is to guarantee adequate access to environmental information, public participation in environmental decision-making processes, and access to justice in environmental matters in Latin America and the Caribbean.
Among the signatories are the Costa Rican Youth and Climate Change Network, the Rural Women’s Network of Costa Rica, Sá Ju Tsa Tkö (Talamanca Cabécar Indigenous Youth), the Climate Route Association, the Escazú Now Costa Rica Campaign, the student federations of the National and Costa Rican Universities (FEUNA and FEUCR), the Center for Research in Marine Sciences and Limnology (CIMAR), the Frente Amplio (FA) and Acción Ciudadana (PAC) political parties.
In addition, David R. Boyd, UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights and the Environment, expressed his disappointment with the country’s inaction.
The United Nations representative questioned Costa Rica’s decision on this issue through social media.
“I do not understand why Costa Rica has not ratified the Escazu Treaty. Costa Rica is considered a leader in environmental and human rights issues, so this failure is atypical.
Escazu is an important treaty and should be ratified by Costa Rica immediately,” he tweeted.
The government and the business sector had previously stated they weren’t in favor of the agreement, as the country had “robust legislation on environmental issues.”
The President and Franz Tattenbach, Minister of Environment and Energy, have emphasized that the proposal could hinder investment projects in Costa Rica.
According to environmentalists, the country must ratify this treaty, as it has promoted itself as a nation that deeply cares for the planet.
“Not ratifying the Escazú Agreement would be a shame for the country, a country that claims to be green,” concluded Henry Picado, spokesperson at the Costa Rican Federation for the Conservation of the Environment.