Costa Rica plans permanent ban on fossil fuel extraction

Costa Rican lawmakers will this week discuss a bill to permanently ban fossil fuel exploration and extraction, news wires reported. The move aims at preventing future governments from pivoting on the issue as the popular eco-tourism destination country aims to decarbonise by 2050, according to Reuters.

Costa Rica started efforts to ban fossil fuel exploration in 2002 under President Abel Pacheco. This ban was supposed to expire in 2014 but later extended until 2050. The new bill, backed by the administration of President Carlos Alvarado, would go further by permanently banning it.

"Our concern now is to remove the temptation, either today or at any time tomorrow, for there to be any current or future government who might think that returning to fossil fuels of the past century is actually a good idea for our country,” Christiana Figueres, a former UN climate chief and former Costa Rican government official who has publicly advocated for the bill, said in an interview with Reuters.

Only a few other countries have taken action to ban fossil fuel exploration and production, including France which aims to do so by 2040, and Belize, which prohibits exploration and drilling in all its territorial waters.

More on this subject: Climate crisis

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