Costa Rica, a Latin American country, is a real example to follow in terms of renewable energy. This small country has just passed the 150-day mark without using any fossil fuels for its electricity, and used less than 4% of non-renewable energy in the first six months of the year. On the other side of the world, Scotland has achieved something incredible. For the first time in its history, wind power alone generated 106% of its daily electricity needs.
Aith a population of 4.8 million inhabitants and a surface area of 51,100 km², Costa Rica is no larger than some French regions, but this does not detract from the country's exemplary side in terms of renewable energies and the desire to live entirely on clean energy. For after going through the driest period of the year, Costa Rica ended the first half of 2016 with 96.36 % of electricity production from renewable energies, according to preliminary data from the National Energy Control Centre (CENCE).
Better, according to the magazine MashableCosta Rica has had more than 150 days of electricity production using only renewable energy since the beginning of the year, and has produced its electricity without any trace of carbon for 76 consecutive days, from 16 June to 2 September. When you consider that such a small country is home to numerous protected areas and eco-lodges and 6% of the world's biodiversity in its 27 national parks and numerous reserves, it is hard to be more environmentally committed. Last year, Costa Rica had already held 285 consecutive days without any fossil energy at all, with an average of 99% of renewable energy in the year.
" Hydrological patterns have been favourable over the past month, so we generated almost all of the electricity without the use of fuels. According to our projections, we will end 2016 with only 2 % of thermal generation, which will give us an essential basis for meeting our commitment to price stability. said Carlos Manuel Obregon, Chief Executive Officer of ICE, the Electricity Institute of Costa Rica, in a press release.
It's blowing in Scotland
On the other side of the world, last Sunday, Scotland achieved something incredible. For the first time in its history, wind power alone generated 106% of its daily electricity needs.
The environmental group WWF Scotland has just confirmed that on 7 August 2016, wind turbines in Scotland produced 39,545 megawatts/hours (MWh) of electricity, while homes, businesses and industry in the country only needed 37,202 MWh.
" This is the first time since we started monitoring data in 2015 that we have all the relevant information to be able to confirm this. "said WWF Scotland Director Lang Banks. « On the road to a fully renewable future, this is a very important step. "
These results were achieved thanks to various factors. First, the day of August 7 was extremely windy. Winds of up to 185 km/h in some parts of the country were recorded, forcing bridges to close, delaying trains, and causing the cancellation of many ferries. A 17,000-tonne oil platform was torn from its tugboat. In addition, power was cut off in parts of Dundee, Scotland's fourth largest city, and with 7 August being a Sunday, much less power was needed to reach the necessary amount of electricity to be generated.
The fact that this country has achieved this feat is nevertheless encouraging evidence of the replacement of fossil fuels by renewable energy and encourages other countries to follow the example of Scotland and other countries moving in the same direction. In 2015, Scotland generated 57.7% of its energy from renewables, and hopes to reach 100% by 2030. A project to install the world's largest floating wind farm off the coast of Peterheadest is underway, which could power nearly 20,000 homes by the end of 2017.