The social impacts of payments for environmental services in Costa Rica. A quantitative field survey and analysis of the Virilla watershed

In 1996 Costa Rica implemented an innovative programme of Payments for Environmental Services (PES). Through this programme, forest and plantation owners are financially and legally acknowledged for the environmental services their forests provide to the community, both nationally and globally. By means of a case study of the Virilla watershed in Costa Rica, and using as a basis for analysis the Sustainable Livelihoods framework, this report examines the impacts the PES programme has on financial, human, social, physical and environmental capital.