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Costa Rica Has Been Using 0% OF Fossil Fuel For More Than Two Months Straight

Costa Rica ran on hundred peercent renewable energy for 76 days without any breakdown or gap between June and August this year, according to a new report, representing that life short of fossil fuels is existable, for small countries, however. This is the second time in the last two years that a country from the Central American has been running for more than two months without any breakdown on renewables energy only, and it takes the 2016 total to 150 days and so far.

According to Costa Rica's National Centre for Energy Control(CENCE), 16 June 2016 was the last day in 2016 that fossil fuels established energy was used by the state grid. (Data for September is still coming.) Since then, the country has been running on a combination of hydro, wind, solar energy, geothermal, with hydro power giving about 80.27% of the entire electricity in the month of August. Geothermal plants added approximately 12.62% of electricity generation in August, whereas wind turbines provided 7.1%, and solar 0.01% of electricity generation. Just like previous year, when Costa Rica succeeded to power itself for entire of 299 days without any break through. Without burning coal, oil, or natural gas, 2016’s milestone was facilitated along by heavy rains at the country’s four hydroelectric power stations.

While the success is unquestionably inspiring, and something that should absolutely be celebrated as evidence that a range of renewable energy foundations can decrease a country’s dependence on fossil fuels, it is necessary to note that Costa Rica’s achievement is mostly due to its size. It has a total area of about 51,000 square km; roughly half the size of the US state of Kentucky, and it has a population of only 4.9 million people.

That comparatively small population means a whole lot less energy is required in Costa Rica than, say, the US, as Maria Gallucci reportsfor Mashable:

"A country with 4.9 million people has created almost 10,800-gigawatt hours of electricity in 2015, according to a July report from the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean. The United States, by a large difference, produced about 373 times more electricity, with nearly 4 million gigawatt hours of total generation in 2015, according to data from the United States Energy Information Administration (USEIA)."

And more, Costa Rica's major activities are tourism and agriculture, rather than more energy demanding industries such as mining or industrial. However just because the country is small and is doing well at leaving fossil fuels than most, that does not mean it is going to rest on its achievements. As Gallucci reports, a enormous hydroelectric project named Reventazón, control by the Costa Rica Electricity Institute (ICE), will come online later this month, after six years of building, which means there is even more hydro power to supply.

Gallucci says, "Revantazón is the biggest public infrastructure project in Central America, after the Panama Canal. The dam's five turbines will have a producing capacity of 305.5 megawatts, enough to power almost 525,000 homes."

We cannot wait to see how extreme Costa Rica can go with their wide renewable energy sources. Let's hope that one year of zero fossil fuels is on the horizon.



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