Developing a circular economy at the local level in Costa Rica



A circular economy is an industrial model that is restorative by design and proposes that, instead of extracting natural resources, materials that have already been processed can be recovered and reused in various ways, thus protecting natural resources from over exploitation, an issue that is particularly sensitive in Costa Rica. The objective in this is to keep scarce, valuable resources in circulation for longer periods of time, promoting recycling and avoiding loss of materials. Achieving these objectives requires alternative models of business such as reuse, remanufacturing and product-as-service.

CTCN Support

  • Support local governments to include the circular economy concept in their territorial and financial planning tools to contribute to achieving Costa Rica's Nationally Determined Contribution and climate policy goals;
  • Gather key information on the effectiveness of relevant technologies and regulatory and economic instruments, including behaviorial economy instruments (or soft instruments);
  • Develop a guide which will facilitate the incorporation of the circular economy concept in territorial and financial planning in municipalities;
  • Conduct a case study on the municipality of Turrialba's efforts to reduce green house gas emissions from municipal waste;
  • Develop a concept note to submit to the Green Climate Fund or other funding institutions for financing implementation of circular economy initiatives.

Expected Impact

●    Reduced use of resources per unit produced;

●    Reduction in quantity of waste produced;

●    Reduction in quantity of energy consumed. Reuse of raw materials reduces the amount of energy required to obtain an element that can be re-used in preparing the same or another product;

●    Development of new businesses and job generation. Latin America presently has a low rate of recycling and increasing that rate will create job growth along the value chain;

●    Promotion of innovation, because it is necessary to change the production model and update the production infrastructure, equipment and technologies, to process what is today considered waste (future raw material); and

●    Mitigation of and adaptation to climate change.


Date of submission
Geographical scope
Costa Rica
Infrastructure and Urban planning

Project details

Cross-sectoral enabler
Economics and financial decision-making
Governance and planning
Community based
Ecosystems and biodiversity
Final type of assistance
Recommendations for law, policy and regulations
Request NDE
Climate Change Directorate (DCC), Ministry of Environment and Energy
This technical assistance advances the following Sustainable Development Goals

Key documents