Women surf camp dominical

Is Costa Rica happiest and greenest country in the world?

Costa Rica has built its reputation as one of the happiest countries in the world. It’s also well know as an environmentally friendly country that welcomes tourist from all over the world, who are attracted to the natural beauty of this land.

 Without a doubt, Costa Rica is one of the most popular destinations in the world for surfing, nature lovers, bird watchers, biologists and leisure travelers. This tiny country of only 51.100km has a population of 4.9 million inhabitants and it receives in average 1.5 million visitors per year.

We can be proud to say that we have no army since 1949. Most of the funds were allocated to support education and health. Not having an army didn’t not influence the safety ratings for our country: we rank as the second safest country in Latin America, only below Chile. We are constantly performing favorably in the human Development Index (HDI), placing 66th in the world (ranking higher than any other Latin American nation).

Because of its progressive environmental policies, Costa Rica is the only country to meet all five UNDP (United Nations Development Programme) criteria. Which has been established to measure environmental sustainability.

In 2009 and 2012, our beautiful country was qualified by the NEF (New Economic Foundation) as the greenest country in the world. On top of that, it was chosen by the Happy Planet Index as the happiest country in the world. The Happy Planet Index measures life expectancy, well-being, environmental footprint and inequality to calculate nations’ success – all areas where Costa Rica’s government has made significant effort and investment.

By 2016, 98.2 % of its electricity comes from renewable sources (hydro, geothermal, solar and biomass). The goal is to become 100% Carbon Neutral by 2020.

However, like any other country, Costa Rica also has room  for improvements. Income inequality in Costa Rica is particularly high – in part, because Costa Rica’s tax system does not effectively redistribute wealth across the population. And while Costa Rica’s commitment to environmental sustainability is impressive, its Ecological Footprint isn’t yet small enough to be completely sustainable.

We will definitely keep working towards a brighter future. The heads of the policy makers seem to all be pointing in the right direction. Not only trying to gain consciousness with its own people, but also emphasizing this sustainable future to our visitors.