|For Costa Rica, MSW management and industrial waste management are the prioritized waste streams that are in need of further capacity building. Regarding MSW, Costa Rica recently developed a new normative framework on solid waste management, which needs to be better promoted among institutions and in society. Effective enforcement of the new laws also will require improvements in funding, technical knowledge, institutional capacity, and societal participation. In terms of finance, the new law foresees that the country has adequate infrastructure to comply with the new regulations; however, funds need to be made available, and knowledge on the financial management of waste services need to be strengthened in municipalities and institutions. The new law broadens the responsibilities of the Ministry of Health, the leading authority in waste issues, and of the municipalities. These institutions need management and technical support to fulfill these new responsibilities. In particular, technical knowledge is needed to adequately assess new technologies in the field of recycling processes, treatment, and final disposal, and to then establish criteria to facilitate technology selection and decision-making. Regarding the social dimension of MSW management, informal waste workers need to be empowered in their role in the solid waste management system so that these mostly family-run and micro-businesses are included.
Although there is mention of industrial waste management (among other special waste streams) in the national waste policy of Costa Rica, there is currently no specific regulation on this topic, but work is underway. However, in order to implement future regulations on industrial waste, technical knowledge and information needs to be generated and made available to the responsible institutions to better assess different options of the treatment, reuse or recycling of industrial wastes. Once a management plan has been developed, options to involve the private sector to financially support industrial waste management should be considered. Waste workers would also need to be trained and equipped with technical knowledge so that they can participate in a future industrial waste management system.