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Costa Rica awarded top UN Environment Programme honor

  • Published on October 20, 2019
Costa Rica, an active member of the One Planet network, has been chosen as Champion of the Earth for policy leadership.

The UN Environment Programme’s Champion of the Earth award recognises individuals and organisations who have had a transformative impact on the environment.

 The 2019 laureates include the government of Costa Rica, a trailblazing world leader in sustainability and active member across several One Planet programmes.

Costa Rica

A celebrated world leader in sustainability, Costa Rica has been chosen as Champion of the Earth for policy leadership because of its pioneering role in the protection of nature and its commitment to ambitious policies to combat climate change. 

Notably, the Central American nation has drafted a detailed plan to decarbonize its economy by 2050, in line with the Paris Climate Agreement and the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals. It hopes to provide a template for other nations to do the same and curb the deadly emissions causing rapid, disastrous climate change. 

The Champion of the Earth Award

The UN Environment Programme’s Champions of the Earth award is the world’s flagship environmental honor. Since 2005, it has recognized heroes who inspire, encourage others to join them, and defend a cleaner future.

From grassroots champions and corporate leaders to political pioneers, it celebrates champions taking bold action for our world. Every year, celebrate individuals, groups and institutions are taking place in the programme. They are transforming our economies, shaping new and sustainable technology and leading political change. They fight environmental injustice, protect our environment and defend our natural resources.

Champions of the Earth are celebrated in four categories:

  • Policy leadership – individuals or organizations in the public sector leading global or national action for the environment. They shape dialogue, lead commitments and act for the good of the planet. 
  • Inspiration and action – individuals or organizations taking bold steps to inspire positive change to protect our world. They lead by example, challenge behavior and inspire millions. 
  • Entrepreneurial vision – individuals or organizations challenging the status quo to build a cleaner future. They build systems, create new technology and spearhead a groundbreaking vision.  
  • Science and innovation – individuals or organizations who push the boundaries of technology for profound environmental benefit. They invent possibilities for a more sustainable world. 

Since 2005, Champions of the Earth has recognized 93 laureates, ranging from world leaders to technology inventors.

Unsplash - Alejandro Leitón

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