Costa Rica is ranked as one of the most ecologically sustainable countries in the world, largely because of their environmental initiatives. One of these initiatives is increasing the use of renewable energy through hydropower, geothermal power, and wind and solar power. Thanks to this Costa Rica’s electricity is almost complete carbon neutral. However, pollution still exists; for example: the majority of transportation within the country still relies on fossil fuels. To eliminate this the nation has pledged to be 100% carbon neutral by 2021. If the Costa Ricans are successful in fulfilling their pledge they will be the first completely carbon neutral country.
Another major sustainability initiative in Costa Rica is the banning of recreational hunting. Before sport hunting was made illegal many hunting tours were marketing to tourists and targeted the nations exotic wildlife. Thanks to new legislation any recreational hunting is illegal with threat of severe penalty (4 months in prison or up to $3000 in fines). The locals are still allowed to hunt and fish especially since some rely on it for a source for food. Costa Rica has also taken great care to preserve its forests and oceans. The country has increased the amount of protected land, about 30% of all land in Costa Rica is now nature reserves. Costa Rica has successfully doubled the amount of forest across the country while tripling its GDP over the past 25 years.
Through the google search I did no initiatives concerning agriculture or coffee were specifically mentioned. However, I have only listed a few of the country’s most notable accomplishments, there are many more that the Costa Ricans engage in to have their country ranked as one of the most sustainable in the world. Overall, learning about these environmental efforts only influence my perception of the country and it’s people in a positive way. They are very impressive and do not seem especially burdensome, they are just evidence that the Ticos appreciate the land around them and that they are doing everything they can to preserve it for everyone to visit and enjoy.
One of the things that excites me most about visiting Costa Rica is seeing the environment that the people work so hard to maintain. I think it will be fun to see the different landscapes, plants and animals. With that, I am excited to try all of the different food that will be served and I will enjoy living with my host family, being fully immersed in the culture.