No to Geothermal Energy in Costa Rica
Congress rejected a law project allowing the state-owned electricity company to explore geothermal energy in national parks.
Monday, July 13, 2009
With the rejected "Regulating Law for the Production of Geothermal Energy in National Parks", the state-owned National Institute of Electricity (ICE) would have explored energy generation in national parks, at the cost of a portion of the sales of electricity to the national parks system. According to estimates by the company, Costa Rica's geothermal potential is located mainly at national parks.
In Costa Rica current installed capacity is 195 MW, in a country whose generation potential identified in studies by the state run power company amounts to 875 MW.
The deputy leader of the ruling bloc has presented a bill that authorizes the state power company to exploit geothermal energy in protected areas: national parks, biological and forest reserves and wildlife refuges.
A bill to authorize geothermal exploitation in an area which has been declared a national park should include reform of several other laws which currently prevent such activity.
ICE is exploring two steam fields in the country's west, in order to install two new geothermal plants, called Las Palias II and Borinquen.
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