Monday, November 27, 2017

Costa Rica Proves Its Green

Costa Rica has beaten its previous records by running for 300 days entirely using renewable energy sources. The country uses five sources of renewable energy (hydro, wind, geothermal, solar and biomass) to generate 99.63% of its energy needs. The country ran for 299 days in 2015 and 271 in 2016. Costa Rica has set an ambitious goal of being 100% carbon neutral by 2021, as well as totally eliminating single use plastic. It also has plans to significantly increase its forest cover. Too bad 'Merica that you are stuck in the age of Trump, this small Central American country is setting a big example for the rest of the world. Green Kudos go to Costa Rica!

In related news, the US commonwealth of Puerto Rico is struggling to restore power to the entire island by Christmas. Conventional grids which rely on poles and wires are extremely vulnerable to high winds such as the 185 mph winds the island suffered during hurricane Maria. A innovative solution is being provided, free, by a New England solar power company, ReVision Energy to Puerto Rico's citizens. The company is building mobile solar power trailers that deploy folding solar panels to generate electricity for low load uses such recharging battery-powered electronic devices and basic lighting needs. The company plans to build 100 of the 12 foot trailers in six months.

Another example of reactionary Repugnant policy making: the House tax plan eliminates the federal tax credit for purchase of electric cars.  The $7500 credit has successfully boosted sales of electric cars in the US. Since the credit was enacted in 2008 the number of available models has grown from 2 to 30. House tax bill supporters say the measure is need to save costs. That concern did not stop them from passing a record-breaking Pentagon budget or granting owners of private jets a new credit, however. An energy policy analyst from the Union of Concerned Scientists says ending the tax break will adversely effect the ability of the US to deploy more electric vehicles. Every year the US subsidizes the fossil fuel industry by $4.7 billion compared to the $580 million the electric car credit cost in 2015.