Costa Rica’s plentiful forests aren’t just nice to look at. According to a new report, they also contribute 10 times more to the country’s GDP than previously thought. The report, released on July 30 by the World Bank and the Central Bank of Costa Rica, shows that forests accounted for 2.1 percent of the country’s GDP between 2011 and 2013.
Previous estimates had set that contribution at between 0.1 and 0.2 percent of GDP.
Unlike those previous estimates, the new forest account considers a greater expanse of economic activities generated by forest products, not just timber extraction. By looking at the value of forest-derived products like cork and paper, the new accounting process shows the value woodlands hold beyond simply providing raw material for the logging industry.