Costa Rica: Pineapples and marijuana illegally grown in protected wild areas

Costa Rica has many beautiful things to offer and it is unfortunate that many of them are being affected by the negative actions of ill-intentioned people and organizations. The Costa Rica News has a series of articles on these issues.

In recent days, it was confirmed that pineapple and marijuana crops have invaded Protected Wild Areas. It is no secret to anyone that in Costa Rica there are some good intentions to conserve lands, fauna, and flora, but that these protected areas are being invaded by illegal crops.

Both pineapple and marijuana crops have appeared in protected areas in recent years says the 2019 Nation Report. “In the case of Pineapple the affectation is important since only in 2017, 3,824 hectares of this crop was planted within Protected Wild Areas in the country; this is an area larger than that of the Cantons of Montes de Oca and Curridabat together. The disturbance was found in several areas located in the North, Caribbean, and South Pacific Regions.

Although with less impact, marijuana crops have also entered protected areas. According to the report, between 2007 and 2018, 35 hectares of Cannabis was seized within Protected Wild Areas, mostly within the La Amistad National Park in Talamanca.

It is worth mentioning, what the study of the National University announced: that protected areas are of important economic value for Costa Rica, since they generate around 3% of GDP, mainly due to tourist activities.

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