The future of restoring tropical forests should not be exclusively in the hands of governments, argues Rebecca Cole, director of three biological stations in Costa Rica run by the Organization for Tropical Studies (OTS). The ecologist believes private institutions and landowners could also have a stake in those efforts.
Native to parts of Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and Venezuela, the cacay nut was long used by indigenous people to treat wounds and light lamps. As those uses faded, trees that reached 40 meters (130 feet) high became appealing targets for loggers. That's begun to change with the renewed appeal of natural oils as beauty treatments.