Costa Rica
Press Release

Costa Rica to meet 83% of decarbonization plan's 1st stage goals by end-2022

Bnamericas Published: Thursday, February 24, 2022
Costa Rica to meet 83% of decarbonization plan's 1st stage goals by end-2022

Minae statement
(Machine translation)

San José. Despite the Covid-19 pandemic, Costa Rica will meet 83% of the goals of the first stage of the National Decarbonization Plan, launched in February 2019. With this, the country manages to lay the foundations to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050.

This is shown by the report "Advances in the implementation of the National Decarbonization Plan", which was presented by government authorities on February 24 at the Museum of Costa Rican Art, three years after its implementation.

According to the report, as of February 2022, Costa Rica has already completed 61% of the goals set for the first stage of the plan. By the end of the year, the figure is projected to reach 83%.

The National Decarbonization Plan is the instrument that traces Costa Rica's roadmap to achieve zero net emissions by 2050, betting on a development model based on the bioeconomy, green growth, improvement of quality of life and social inclusion.

The President of the Republic, Carlos Alvarado, highlighted the efforts of all public and private actors to advance this important and visionary initiative that, "despite the great difficulties caused by the pandemic, progress has been made with the proposed objectives. on this instrument,” he said.

"The implementation of the National Decarbonization Plan contributes to the construction of a healthy future for the next generations," assured President Alvarado, delimiting that it is a path for Costa Rica to achieve a sustainable economic recovery and once again demonstrate that it is sustainable growth can be promoted that generates important revenues for the country.

“The National Decarbonization Plan has strengthened public and private efforts to face the challenges facing the country and the planet in terms of climate change. It is the route to build a Costa Rica with a green economy, which improves the quality of life of the population with a modern, innovative and sustainable development for 2050”, stressed the First Lady of the Republic, Claudia Dobles.

During the first three years of implementation, progress was made in key sectors due to their high emissions, such as transport -which generates almost half of greenhouse gases- and agriculture. To mitigate this, during the first phase of the plan, 9 exclusive lanes were intervened on trunk routes, a national network of 43 chargers for electric vehicles was installed, and 1,652 cattle farms were included under the NAMA low-emissions program, among other advances.

“Thanks to committed work between public, private, cooperation and civil society institutions, today we already have a solid foundation in place, which will allow us to implement even more ambitious changes in the future. Costa Rica is on the way to the goal of decarbonization”, assured the Minister of Environment and Energy, Andrea Meza.

The Minister of Agriculture and Livestock, Renato Alvarado, stressed that the landscapes include the integration of agriculture, livestock, forests and urban development. At the same time, he highlighted that, according to the GHG Inventory, emissions from the agricultural sector were reduced by 20.9% between 1990 and 2017.

“Together with this decrease in emissions, between 1990 and 2019 the value of agricultural production doubled. That speaks of the efficiency with which the people dedicated to agricultural production in our country are doing their homework. Making activities more eco-competitive socially, economically and environmentally, while being more resilient to climate change, better adapted and low in carbon emissions”, he declared.


Advances in the plan 

The first stage of the plan —called “foundations”— covers from 2018 to 2022 and contemplates laying the foundations for future decarbonization actions. Later, it will be followed by the “inflection” (2023-2030) and “mass deployment” (2031-2050) phases.

The National Decarbonization Plan has 10 main axes and 8 transversal axes. The current report identified specific advances for each of these axes.

For example, in the axis of mobility based on efficient public transport, 5 of the 8 goals (62%) completed their actions by February 2022. Before the end of the year, another 2 goals are planned to be completed, raising compliance to a 87%.

The actions of this axis include the piloting of electric buses in 2 urban public transport routes, the 68 km of exclusive lanes implemented in 9 trunk routes and the entry into operation of the National System of Electronic Payment in Public Transport (SINPE- TP).

Similarly, the axis of the low-emission livestock model met 42% of the goals as of February 2022, but 100% of the goals are planned to be completed before the end of the year.

As part of these advances, at least 1,652 livestock farms were incorporated into the NAMA Livestock low-emissions program and a guiding Sustainable Livestock Policy for the sector will be published this year, among other actions.

Finally, the waste sector also experienced a significant level of compliance with the goals, with 87% progress. This includes the formalization of the National Composting Plan 2020-2050 and the design of a Waste NAMA, which would seek to mitigate emissions from organic waste.

Decarbonization benefits. The actions carried out allow the implementation of the National Decarbonization Plan to continue on time, which would enter the inflection phase as of 2023.

The plan indicates that, during this stage, decisive interventions will be carried out that will redirect the markets towards zero emissions. The decade from 2020 to 2030, moreover, is essential for global climate action.

In addition, studies show that the proper implementation of the National Decarbonization Plan would bring significant economic benefits to the country, especially necessary at a time of economic reactivation.

An analysis by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) shows that, in the transportation sector alone, implementing the plan would cost $37 billion, but would provide benefits of $78 billion, for a net gain of $41 billion.

On the other hand, a study developed by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) through the Climate Promise shows that investments in decarbonization would accelerate both employment and post-COVID-19 economic recovery. These investments would increase the employment rate and the added value of all sectors of the economy by 2025.

Summary: Executive summary Decarbonization preview (

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