By Jorge De la O, student at Leadership Field Course
The tropical rainforest of the Osa Peninsula exhales mists of steam as the sun rises and this time was no exception. The condensation of water vapor could be observed on the plants early in the morning when we were heading to Golfo Dulce, a hilarious and spectacular place. The sea seems pure crystal and allows us to observe the secrets of the seabed formed by coral structures that have been built by nature over the centuries. Being able to witness the magnificent and important role that the ocean plays for the health of the planet and to mitigate climate change was the experience that most captivated my attention during the Tropical Ecology & Conservation Leadership Field Course at Osa Conservation.
We know that a healthy ocean is a natural carbon reservoir and its degradation implies the increase of the climate crisis. Without your help, we cannot prevent the planet from heating up to an unsustainable level. Without a doubt, we must establish strong climate actions and address climate change. If we are going to adapt to what are now inevitable climate changes, then restoring the native environment should be our main response.
To witness the effort made by Raising Coral Costa Rica to restore the reefs in Golfo Dulce is something worth admiring, but to collaborate we must address the commitment and we need to strengthen our actions. For that reason, “The goal for marine biodiversity should be the protection of at least 30% of the ocean through effectively protected areas and the sustainable management of the remaining 70%.”
On the other hand, one of the most relevant and shared aspects among all the teachers of the course is that there are opportunities to do everything possible and reverse the effects of the extensive loss of biodiversity that we have caused. I feel really inspired after seeing so much work done, understanding a little more about how conservation works and what the challenges are, as well as motivated to contribute to conservation processes since it is not a secret that we have left to do.
Finally, I must express that it was very incredible to spend 8 weeks with many interesting people, with great wisdom and with a good attitude of wanting to share knowledge. I stay with the people who inspired me to move forward in the world of conservation, those who believed, believe and will continue to believe in the power of communities as an ally to improve conservation efforts. For these reasons, I find it simply reasonable to stop looking for a solution to the problems we have created for hundreds of years.
What is your 2020 climate action objective?