Costa Rica Switches to 100% Renewable Energy

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Costa Rica says goodbye to fossil fuels, and goes renewable! One of only 4 countries so far to take this leap, the future looks promising – and sustainable – for this small country.

In 2015, Costa Rica joined the small but growing ranks of a very important group of countries: those pledging to leave fossil fuels in the past, and step into a more sustainable future. Switching to renewable energy is a big step, but being a small, sparsely populated country helps.

Nonetheless, Costa Rica is a leader among fossil-fuel-independent nations, so far joined only by Paraguay, Albania, Iceland, and (in 2016), Sweden – the most populous by far.

Here is how Costa Rica did it, and what they’re planning for the future:

In six years, Costa Rica plans to be carbon neutral. It’s getting closer to that goal: In March, the government announced that the country has been running on nothing but renewable electricity in 2015.

Compare that to the U.S., where renewables generate only around 13% of electricity. Of course, Costa Rica is tiny in comparison—with a population only about the size of Alabama….

The country’s ability to swear off fossil fuels this year also took some luck. Most of the country’s electricity comes from hydropower, and thanks to recent heavy rains, hydroplants have been able to supply more power than usual.

That reliance on hydro also puts Costa Rica at risk in the case of future drought. So to prepare for drier weather that’s likely to come with climate change, the country is investing in more geothermal power. Though the grid doesn’t rely on much wind or solar power yet, there’s an opportunity for both….

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Read the full article at FastCoexist.com

 

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