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Electricity in Costa Rica in 2023

Global Ranking: #47
93.2% #11 Low-carbon electricity
54.37 % #22 Electrification
272.88 watts #113 Generation / person
63.69 gCO2eq/kWh #12 Carbon Intensity

In 2023, Costa Rica generated around 11.5 TWh of electricity from low-carbon sources. The overwhelming majority of this came from hydropower, which contributed about 8.5 TWh. Wind energy added about 1.5 TWh, and geothermal accounted for around 1.3 TWh. Combining these low-carbon sources, Costa Rica's per capita electricity usage is much lower than the global average of 425 watts per person. Despite a strong reliance on clean energy, the country may face energy limitations, affecting industrial growth and residential supply. An increase in electricity capacity is crucial to meet future demands while upholding environmental sustainability.


To boost low-carbon electricity generation, Costa Rica can expand its wind energy sector, which has already shown considerable promise. Looking at global examples, Brazil, a country with similar environmental conditions, generates a notable 96 TWh from wind energy, suggesting that scaling up wind projects is feasible. Additionally, Costa Rica might emulate developments in solar energy from countries like India, which produced 113 TWh through solar, or Brazil, with its 52 TWh in solar energy. By investing in these proven green technologies, Costa Rica can further reduce its dependence on fossil fuels, mitigating climate change, and decreasing air pollution.


Costa Rica has a rich history of increasing low-carbon energy generation. In the 1980s, incremental increases in hydropower were observed, followed by a significant rise of 1 TWh in 1997. The early 2000s saw consistent growth with several years marking increases around 0.5 TWh to 0.8 TWh in hydropower. More recent years highlighted diversification with wind contributing an extra 0.5 TWh in 2018, and geothermal also rising by 0.5 TWh in 2019. Despite occasional setbacks in hydropower, the general trend indicates a steady commitment to clean energy. It is crucial to maintain and enhance this trajectory to further benefit from sustainable and green energy sources.

Electricity Imports and Exports

Balance of Trade

Data Sources

For the years 1971 to 1981 the data source is World Bank.
For the years 1982 to 1988 the data sources are World Bank and IEA (imports/exports).
For the year 1989 the data sources are EIA and IEA (imports/exports).
For the years 1990 to 1999 the data source is IEA.
For the years 2000 to 2003 the data source is Ember.
For the year 2004 the data source is IEA.
For the years 2005 to 2010 the data source is Ember.
For the year 2011 the data source is IEA.
For the years 2012 to 2023 the data source is Ember.
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