Sustainable Experiments In Paradise

Paradise: crystal clear water, blue sky, sandy beaches, lush vegetation. A generic image, certainly. Costa Rica, nestled in the heart of Central America, is just that – to the untrained eye. Who wouldn’t want to experience life in Costa Rica, if all that Costa Rica has to offer are the startling images of beauty that grace glossy travel magazines?
Ask yourself, though, how this is possible. With over two million visitors a year, surely Costa Rica must be doing something right, to ensure its ‘paradise’ is maintained. Well, the country is doing much more than ‘something’ – it has embraced sustainability whole heartedly. And, if you do move to Costa Rica as an expat (lucky you!), you’ll quickly see that sustainability isn’t just a buzz word: it’s a way of life.
Costa Rica has lately topped the Happy Planet Index (HPI) – for the second time running. The HPI – no matter how jolly its title – is an accredited study, and it shows that Costa Rica is clearly the happiest, most ecological country in the world. Reason enough to move there, if sustainability is what sustains you!
The country is committed to renewable energy – 99% of its energy is from renewable sources; to reversing deforestation –its inhabitants have already almost succeeded in this; and to becoming carbon neutral by 2021. With 10% of the country under national protection, these seem like viable goals…but there is still a long way to go.
The first step is to bridge the gap between sustainable, eco tourism, and a totally sustainable way of life for the permanent inhabitants of the country. After moving to Costa Rica, you might start to see the divide more clearly: often, it is only certain designated organic farms which completely adhere to the recycling, reduced consumer spending, and reforestation which has made the country so special.
So why not take part in one of the dozens of experimental projects to promote sustainability while you are living in Costa Rica. After all, you’re already a part of the happiest community in the world. Environmental sustainability is key to maintaining this, but it needs to spread completely across the country. Do what you can, on whatever plot of land you have to nurture, to ensure that future inhabitants and environmentalists going as expats to Costa Rica get to experience the island for what it truly is – now and always: paradise.