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HomeTopicsEnvironment and WildlifeIllegal Logging Leads Environmental Crime Reports in Costa Rica

Illegal Logging Leads Environmental Crime Reports in Costa Rica

The National System of Conservation Areas (SINAC) processed 7,240 complaints related to environmental crimes between March 2023 and March 2024. These are complaints that are handled through the Integrated Environmental Complaint Processing and Response System (SITADA), where citizens can enter their environmental complaint.

Franz Tattenbach, Minister of Environment and Energy, mentioned that through this mechanism it is possible to define, expand, and improve the process of reviewing the information reported by citizens in relation to environmental complaints, making it possible to streamline the process of control, attention, and analysis of these reports.

Illegal logging accounted for 2,600 reports, the highest number overall. In addition, there were also 603 cases of illegal wood transportation. The Central Conservation Area (ACC-SINAC) leads the list with 794 cases, and the Central Pacific Conservation Area with 794 cases.

The second place belongs to wildlife rescue, which totaled 754 reports, with the Central Conservation Area leading in the attention of these environmental crimes with 384 complaints. In addition, 278 incidents of hunting in protected wildlife areas were registered. Wildlife possession reached 603 cases during the period, with the Central Conservation Area leading the list with 384 cases.

“It is worrying, according to data obtained from environmental complaints, that the phenomenon of illegal logging tops the list, which causes deforestation and illegal timber harvesting. Deforestation involves the change of use or clear-cutting of forest cover, and illegal logging involves cutting trees without eliminating the forest cover. Both are illegal,” said Franz Tattenbach.

SINAC encouraged the population to denounce any suspicious illegal activity, to help the institution protect Costa Rica’s environment through the number 1192, through SITADA’s web page http://www.sitada.go.cr/denunciaspublico/ or through any MINAE office.

“All you have to do is enter your report through the ‘enter your report’ module, and the system automatically assigns you an identification number, with which you will be able to check the status of your report in the future,” they said.

After the environmental complaint has been assessed, it is forwarded to the appropriate agency for investigation of the reported facts and to initiate necessary actions. The complainant will receive automatic notification of the investigation results, and further procedures will be communicated via email.

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