June 27th, 2013 (InsideCostaRica.com) Decreasing costs and new technologies could make renewable energy sources more attractive than hydrocarbons in Latin America, according to “Rethinking Our Energy Future,” a report issued by the Inter-American Development Bank.
According to the report, renewable energy sources in the region have the potential to supply 22 times more electricity than demand by 2050.
In Costa Rica, the greatest potential is in geothermal energy, according to the report.
The report says that solar, geothermal, tidal, wind, and biomass resources in the region could produce up 80 petawatt-hours of electricity.
In 2012, global investment in non-traditional, renewable energy resources (solar, wind, geothermal, tidal, small-scale hydro, and other technologies) in addition to traditional hydropower amounted to $244 billion, of which Latin America accounted for just 5.4%.
According to the report, governments in the region need to improve their policy and regulatory frameworks in order to increase investments in these alternative resources.
While alternative energy investments in the region have been modest, the report notes that renewable projects are gaining moment in the region.
Inside Costa Rica recently interviewed astronaut, physicist, and national hero, Frank Chang about a joint project between his Ad Astra Rocket Company and Cummins Power Generation, in which the team has successfully powered an electrical generator using an innovative combination of hydrogen and biogas.