Costa Rica is now running completely on renewable energy

Costa Rica is now running completely on renewable energy

Costa Rica is running without having to burn a single fossil fuel, and it’s been doing so for 75 straight days.

Thanks to some heavy rainfall this year, Costa Rica’s hydropower plants alone are generating nearly enough electricity to power the entire country. With a boost from geothermal, solar, and wind energy sources, the country doesn’t need an ounce of coal or petroleum to keep the lights on. Of course, the country has a lot of things going in its favor. Costa Rica is a small nation, has less than 5 million people, doesn’t have much of a manufacturing industry that would require a lot of energy, and is filled with volcanoes and other topographical features that lend themselves to renewable energy.

Nonetheless, it is both a noble and significant feat for a nation of any size to eschew fossil fuels completely.

Costa Rica is not the only place in the area committed to running on green energy. Bonaire, a Dutch island territory off the coast of Venezuela, operates at nearly 100% renewable energy, and will likely reach that milestone soon with the help of an unlikely energy source: algae.

In Costa Rica, a drought would seriously disrupt the country’s ability to generate electricity with water. That’s probably why its government approved a $958 million geothermal project. While that’s being funded largely by Japan and the European Investment Bank, Costa Rica has already been able to spend so much on renewable energy because it doesn’t need to spend anything on defense. The country hasn’t had a military since 1948.

Source: Quartz

Date: March 2015


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