The Costa Rica Institute of Fisheries and Aquaculture (INCOPESCA) recently authorized the exploitation of several species, including corals, turtles, and wild iguanas, categorizing them as “species of aquaculture interest.”
This decision is undoubtedly concerning since it involves vital coral species and exotic animals such as green turtles and striped iguanas that are susceptible to illegal hunting. Moreover, this move could open the door to the trafficking of wild species, their captivity, or the overexploitation of fragile ecosystems.
Kattia Cambronero Aguiluz, a deputy of the Liberal Progressive Party, expressed her concern about the possibility of the exploitation of vulnerable species. She urged the president of INCOPESCA to provide the technical criteria on which the decision was based. The Ministry of Environment and Energy (MINAE) is now reviewing the official list of species published in La Gaceta.
The changes in the list were discussed with several organizations, including the Pacific Marine Park, National Animal Health Service (SENASA), Nautical Fishing Nucleus of the National Learning Institute (INA), University of Costa Rica (UCR), National Technical University (UTN), State Distance University (UNED), National University (UNA), and Technological Institute of Costa Rica (ITCR).
However, the decision to allow the exploitation of coral, turtles, and iguanas, among others, has raised concerns about the potential for the overexploitation of vulnerable ecosystems.
The decision to add 200 new species to the list of commercial interest is a worrisome development for Costa Rica. This move goes against the country’s environmental policies and its efforts to protect its natural treasures.
Costa Rica is well-known for its eco-tourism industry, which attracts millions of visitors every year. The country’s natural beauty and biodiversity are a source of pride for its citizens and a valuable resource for the economy.
It is important for the government to recognize the importance of protecting the country’s natural resources. The decision to allow the exploitation of coral, turtles, and iguanas, among others, could have a detrimental impact on the country’s environment and economy in the long run. The government should strive to preserve the country’s natural treasures and ensure the sustainability of its ecosystems.