Monday 3 October 2022

Costa Rica extends moratorium on oil exploration

Costa Rica has since 2002 an oil moratorium established by decree by then President Abel Pacheco and extended by successive governments

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01 October 2022 - At The Banks - BCCR

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Costa Rica’s president Carlos Alvarado, signed on Monday a decree with which extends until 2050 the moratorium on oil exploration and exploitation, both in the continental and marine territory.

Carlos Alvarado. Photo Casa Presidencial

In Costa Rica, there is an oil moratorium since 2002 established by decree by then President Abel Pacheco, which was later extended by the governments of Laura Chinchilla and Luis Guillermo Solís.

The Solís moratorium is valid to September 15, 2021.

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The signing of the decree is part of the Plan Nacional de Descarbonización 2018-2050 (National Decarbonization Plan), presented on Sunday by the Government of Alvarado, which seeks to abolish the use of fossil fuels by 2050 and enhance the use of clean energies, to combat climate change.

“Decarbonization is the great task of our generation and Costa Rica must be among the first countries to achieve it, if not the first,” declared repeatedly the President Carlos Alvarado Quesada.

“The commitment to current and future generations is to keep our country free of activities that could threaten our ecological balance. With this decree, we not only maintain but extend the protection that began in the government of Pacheco,” added Alvarado.

The decree explains that ‘Costa Rica has declared its aspiration to be a modern, green, emission-free, resilient and inclusive economy, which requires a balance between the long-term vision and immediate actions’.

Costa Rica, recognized for its protection of the environment, is not an oil producer, but it is suspected that it has deposits in the Caribbean and the north, whose exploration is opposed by environmentalists and politicians.

Every year Costa Rica spends US$1 billion on fuel imports.

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