In Costa Rica, the sugarcane agroindustry is an important economic engine, since for every 1,000 million Costa Rican colons of sugar demand, an additional 2,401 million colons are produced in the economy. Precisely because of its importance, it has become a priority for environmental preservation.

In this line, the Nationally Appropriate Mitigation Actions (NAMA) for Sugarcane in Costa Rica is the first in this sector developed worldwide and is aligned with several Sustainable Development Goals such as: SDG 9 Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure, SDG 12 Responsible Production and Consumption, SDG 13 Climate Action, and SDG 17 Partnership to Achieve the Goals.

The initiative is promoted at the sectoral level by the Liga Agrícola Industrial de la Caña de Azúcar (LAICA) in conjunction with sugar mills and independent producers and aims to transform sugarcane cultivation methods to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and contribute to actions to prevent climate change, as well as increase current agricultural productivity levels by reducing costs, optimizing the use of resources, among others.

The goal of this project is to establish, starting in 2025, an initial phase of a Pilot Plan by installing at least 70 comparative plots, in which a series of actions will be developed over 5 years in order to validate the strategies, technologies and mechanisms proposed to mitigate GHG and Gg of CO2 eq through three scenarios proposed for sugarcane production to cover 75% of the national area planted in the country by 2035, a space that currently occupies 60,668 ha. 

Undoubtedly, the efforts made in this field are of vital importance for the preservation of the environment and social welfare, as well as to raise the level of national and international eco-competitiveness of the sector. These initiatives are one more step towards the revolution of the sector in order to achieve a sustainable balance in food production and have been achieved with a great effort of awareness and alignment of all the links in the production chain that understand the importance of staggered implementations to achieve the objectives of an entire sector.

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