By Daniela Vidal
Definitions can stir up emotions and sometimes conflict. “Sustainability” doesn’t lack for either. This is the third in a series of looks at how Ticos define sustainability and what it means to them.
LIBERIA, Costa Rica — Erick Villalobos works to ensure the highest quality of rice and a good price to the farmers in the Coopeliberia, a farmers’ cooperative. For Villalobos, there is a delicate balance to making the most out of his resources and maintaining the environment as it is:
“Sustainability means that a process can go forth without altering the environment and at the same time taking full advantage. There have to be parameters to the [business, economic, agricultural] objective. You have to question, you have to doubt to find the best process. There needs to be support in different areas. I manage; I have a coworker who works in occupational health, one who works in sales. Any process has to be done together. Working together makes this business sustainable. There has to be 100 percent benefit from the process. If the process in any way damages the environment, then it isn’t sustainable”