top of page

Rich Coast Diving: Leading the Way as Costa Rica's First PADI Eco Center

Costa Rica, known for its breathtaking natural beauty and commitment to environmental conservation, has become a global leader in sustainable tourism. As eco-consciousness continues to shape the travel and dive industry, it is clear that divers and dive businesses alike call for a transparent, trustworthy and ambitious global eco label that addresses greenwashing fears and makes identification of “green” operators less of a challenge. As a result, PADI Eco Center was born. But what does that really mean ?

There are three criteria that a PADI operators must meet to qualify as a PADI Eco Center:

As the oldest PADI Career Development Center in Costa Rica, Rich Coast Diving has emerged as a pioneer in promoting responsible scuba diving practices. In recognition of these outstanding efforts, Rich Coast Diving has proudly earned the distinction of becoming the first PADI Eco Center in Costa Rica. This blog post will delve into the significance of this achievement, highlighting the journey of Rich Coast Diving and the positive impact it has on the local marine ecosystem.

1. The Importance of Eco-Friendly Diving

Scuba diving allows enthusiasts to explore the wonders of the underwater world, but it is crucial to engage in this activity with a deep respect for marine life and ecosystems. Unfortunately, irresponsible diving practices can harm fragile underwater environments and threaten the delicate balance of marine ecosystems. Recognizing this, PADI (Professional Association of Diving Instructors) established the PADI Eco Program to promote sustainable scuba diving practices.

How does PADI know if our business demonstrates an exemplary level of environmental best practice ? Environmental performance is monitored by The Reef-World Foundation who operates the Green Fins initiative in partnership with the United Nations Environment Programme. PADI Members who demonstrate an exemplary level of environmental best practice are reported in real-time to PADI as having met the challenging threshold for PADI Eco Center.

The Green Fins initiative has been running for almost two decades, establishing global expertise on how to successfully support dive operators to reduce their environmental impact year on year with proven results. For this reason, PADI chose to integrate Green Fins as the core environmental performance monitoring system for PADI Eco Center in order to directly address industry demand for a trustworthy, world-class and independently verified eco label.

How does Green Fin assess the environmental performance of our business ?

  • A self-evaluation tool, where we are asked to answer various questions relating to the impact of our operation on the natural world.

  • An action plan and progress tracker with solutions, where we monitor and adjust our action plan, report our progress.

  • Being part of a community forum, where we interact with the Green Fins team, conservation NGOs and other like-minded marine tourism operators, sharing solutions that have worked for those who have faced similar environmental challenges.

Based on ongoing interaction with the above resources, Green Fins Members are assigned an overall score as an indication of environmental performance. The Green Fins scoring system is dynamic, meaning our score constantly evolves depending on our environmental performance. Currently we are a Green Fin Silver member and we constantly focus on doing better every day.

2. Rich Coast Diving: A Commitment to Sustainability and eco friendly diving and snorkeling tours

Located in the vibrant coastal town of Playas del Coco, Rich Coast Diving has long been an advocate for marine conservation. Their journey towards becoming a PADI Eco Center began with a firm commitment to promoting sustainable practices among staff, divers, and the local community. By embracing environmentally-friendly protocols, Rich Coast Diving aimed to protect the diverse marine life found in Costa Rica's waters. Just a few examples of how we make a difference every day:

  • We do not use any single-use plastic during any of our trips

  • We use big re-usable containers for water and iced tea instead of individual bottles.

  • Cups are re-uesable and washed every day.

  • We serve delicious local home made cake instead of cookies wrapped in plastic.

  • We serve fruits that are freshly cut and prepared on the boat.

  • All trash is brought back to shore for proper disposal.

  • We use mooring lines on all dive sites where possible, preserving the fragile ecosystem.

  • We have a strict no gloves and and no touch policy.

  • We promote the "10 tips for divers to Protect the Ocean" from PADI AWARE each time we teach a course.

  • We participate and organise monthly beach and ocean cleanups with our students and guests. Read more in our recent blog about cleanup events.

  • We support the work of important conservationists like Crema Costa Rica and the SeaChange Agency of Randall Arauz. Learn more about the upcoming trip with the Seachange Agency and Crema led by Randall Arauz to Coco Island. Where you can participate as a citizen scientist.

Cocos Island Expedition with Rich Coast Diving

3. Meeting PADI Eco Center Standards

To qualify as a PADI Eco Center, dive centers must adhere to strict environmental standards. Rich Coast Diving demonstrated this dedication by implementing sustainable practices such as responsible dive planning, proper waste management, and the promotion of marine conservation education. By meeting these rigorous criteria, Rich Coast Diving earned the esteemed title of the first PADI Eco Center in Costa Rica.

4. Inspiring Others: A Catalyst for Change

Rich Coast Diving's achievement as the first PADI Eco Center in Costa Rica serves as a catalyst for positive change in the diving industry. By leading by example, we try inspire other dive centers and operators to adopt sustainable practices. Through our outreach and educational initiatives, we spread the message of responsible diving and our vital role in preserving the underwater wonders for future generations. By taking small steps today, we can collectively ensure a sustainable future for Costa Rica's rich marine biodiversity and be part of a new standard for responsible scuba diving around the world.

For more information contact:

Rich Coast Diving

Mrs. Céline Monfort

WhatsApp +506 8610 0914

Rich Coast Diving Costa Rica LogoRich Coast Diving Costa Rica Logo

10 Day Dive Package Costa Rica with Rich Coast Diving


bottom of page