Central America has a very special geography that may, in the coming years, help it to be energy independent. Because Central America is located in a very active tectonic zone, it is the perfect location for the use of geothermal power plants. Geothermal energy uses the heat, emissions, and greenhouse gases that are released from the shifting of tectonic plates — something that Central America, located just over a tectonic hot spot, sees a lot of in the form of earthquakes and volcanic activity.
Is Geothermal Energy Cost-Effective?
Geothermal energy can, at first, be very expensive; it requires significant investment at the get-go in order to build the power plants that harness what is released from the movement of the tectonic plates. As a developing region of the world this can be problematic, as infrastructure-building projects often come last. Foreign investors can be very helpful in this instance, however. Luckily, this type of energy is secure enough to provide long-term returns to its investors.
An Isreali-owned company has helped by investing to build geothermal and hydroelectric power plants in Central America’s largest country, Guatemala. The country aims to be producing 60% of its own energy from these two types of power plant by the year 2022.
Geothermal Energy and Sustainability
Unfortunately, geothermal energy is not suitable for all areas of the globe — namely those that lack the special conditions that Central America has. Yet sustainability requires that every area of the world use the resources, unique geography, and natural elements that they possess.
As we are very interested in sustainability at Bodhi Surf School, we are thrilled to hear that this supposedly more “clean” and “green” form of energy might soon be gaining interest and support, and may become a daily part of life in Costa Rica. We will be watching the development of this story very carefully.