COSTA RICA TO BAN FOSSIL FUELS AND BECOME THE WORLD’S FIRST DECARBONIZED SOCIETY
Costa Rica’s new president has announced a plan to ban fossil fuels and become the first fully decarbonized country in the world. Carlos Alvarado, a 38-year-old former journalist, made the announcement to a crowd of thousands during his inauguration. “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,” Mr Alvarado said. Symbolically, the president arrived at the ceremony in San Jose aboard a hydrogen-fuelled bus. Costa Rica already generates more than 99% of its electricity using renewable energy sources, but achieving zero-carbon transport quickly—even in a country well-known for its environmental commitment—will be a significant challenge, experts say. Jose Daniel Lara, a Costa Rican energy researcher at the University of California-Berkeley, said completely eliminating fossil fuels within just a few years is probably unrealistic— though the plan will lay the groundwork for faster action towards that goal.