Carbon emissions are continuing to rise at an alarming rate and the climate is being heavily affected. The use of non-renewable resources needs to be reduced and a switch to clean renewable resources is needed very quickly. Many countries have begun to plan a NetZero strategy that will be put into place in efforts to meet the Paris agreement. Becoming net zero refers to the balance between the amount of greenhouse gas produced and the amount removed from the atmosphere. Canada alongside 120 countries have committed to becoming net-zero emissions by 2050, however there are many countries who have already or are close to becoming 100% clean.
Currently there are 7 countries who are either at or very close to using 100% clean renewable power: Iceland (100%), Paraguay (100%), Costa Rica (99%), Norway (98%), Austria (80%), Brazil (75%), and Denmark (69%).
Iceland is a role model for renewable energy. Due to its geography and geology, it has an abundance of clean renewable energy. 73% of Iceland’s electricity is provided by hydropower plants and the remaining from geothermal energy. 90% of Icelandic households are heated with geothermal water.
Paraguay is the home to one of the largest hydropower plants in the world. The Itaipú dam is located on the Paraná River between Brazil and Paraguay. It accounted for 90.8% of Paraguay’s electricity demand in 2018.
Costa Rica have not burned any oil, coal, or natural gas to power their country. In the last 4 years they have managed to generate 98.53% of their electricity from renewable sources. 78% of their electricity is generated through hydro, 10.29% is derived from wind turbines, 10.23% from geothermal and just under 1% from solar panels.
Renewable sources in Canada currently account for 18.9% of the energy supply. With 59.3% coming from hydro, it makes us the second largest producer of hydroelectricity in the world behind China. Wind energy is the second most important source of clean renewable energy in Canada, and it is the fastest growing source as well. Microgeneration wind turbines which refer to small-scale turbines are a great option for homes, farms, or business to generate their own electricity and reduce their electricity purchases from the electrical grid. They are a great way to reduce emissions and reduce your electricity costs. They also allow you to do your part in becoming NetZero.
NetZero is possible as many countries are close to achieving this goal already but for this to become a global achievement, we all need to be on the page and realize that we must act now.