Nature is an integral part of life in Costa Rica. In the morning we wake up to the sounds of the jungle, and in the evenings we wind down with an oceanside sunset. Our food is grown locally (and we know the farmer and where it came from) and our fish is caught fresh daily. There is an unending respect for Mother Nature that permeates our culture; we would be nothing without the food, the sun, and the water that surrounds us.
Looking to the Future
Why is this important? Well, Costa Rica is set to become the first carbon-free and plastic-free country in the world! We want humans and animals to be able to enjoy the beauty of Costa Rica for centuries to come, and that guides the way that we live our lives.
For the last four years, Costa Rica has generated 99% of its power via renewable sources, like wind, solar, water and even volcano power. “Basing [electricity] generation on renewable resources allows the country to achieve one of the lowest ratios of greenhouse gas emissions to electrical consumption on the planet,” the Costa Rican Electricity Institute (ICE) indicated in a statement.
But that simply isn’t good enough. President Carlos Alvarado Quesada stated during his inauguration that “Decarbonization is the great task of our generation and Costa Rica must be one of the first countries in the world to accomplish it, if not the first.” If all goes as planned Costa Rica will be carbon neutral by 2021.
The Challenge Behind Plastic-Free
The goal to ditch single-use plastics, however, is a bit more complicated. Many areas lack water that is suitable for drinking without boiling or filtering, so many tourists and locals alike turn to single-use plastics for clean drinking water. Despite recycling efforts, many of these plastics fail to be properly disposed. Grocery stores boast foods that are packaged in plastic, and plastic bags are still given out at a plethora of grocery stores.
That being said, plastic-free is not an impossible goal. Through education and continued effort we are striving to eradicate single-use plastics by 2021. It is our hope to be able to lead other countries to fight for a happier, healthier tomorrow. We are proud to be part of a community that places the future first.