Latin America

Chaves marks a shift in Costa Rica’s environmental leadership

The new president of Costa Rica said he will not ratify the Escazú Agreement, in a sharp departure from the country’s active pursuit of sustainability

Escazú Costa Rica Chaves
Forest in Costa Rica. Photo: lvalin/Shutterstock

Rodrigo Chaves, the new president of Costa Rica, was sworn in on May 8 and as one of his first moves he distanced himself from the country’s history of pioneering environmental sustainability, rejecting the ratification of the Escazú Climate Agreement on the grounds that it would threaten the post-Covid economic recovery. 

The agreement, which was signed in 2018 and came into force last year, is considered a landmark green alliance between Latin American nations.

“The private sector must be reassured that the Escazú Agreement is not on the government’s agenda,” Mr. Chaves said shortly before taking office, adding...

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