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Costa Rica

Naranja, Seminar on rainwater, greywater usage and systems for sustainable wastewater purification

Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), company that specialises in international development,
Programme KOPLAN, PN. 12.2277.7-001.00
Insituto National de Aprendizaje, INA, Naranjo, Costa Rica, Oct./Nov. 2014

Costa Rica, having a population of just over 4.8 million inhabitants and covering an area of 51,000 square kilometres, is a relatively small but stable country with a rather high species diversity. Therefore, it is also called the “Green Paradise”. Until 2021, Costa Rica is striving for carbon neutrality. However, in the Environmental Performance Index (EPI), developed by the Yale University, Costa Rica finished up 54th. This is mainly due to the mere fact that it finished up 125th in the field of sewage purification on an international level. Alternative possibilities for water management, such as rain-, grey- and near-natural wastewater treatment plants are rarely used. Additionally, the theoretical knowledge of individual technologies has also been found to be deficient, for instance regarding the planning, dimensioning/sizing, construction and maintenance of the plants.
On the basis of this, a 5-day seminar about educating sustainable water management started in October 2015.
Axel Haase (CIM) and Silvia Campos (INA) organised the seminar. Oliver Kopsch (DWC) moderated the event in Costa Rica and gave lectures on filtration systems. Dr. Christian Wilhelm elaborated the themes of greywater recycling and rainwater management. Jörg Janisch (Janisch & Schulz) gave lectures on near-natural wastewater treatment.

5-day seminar in Oct./Nov. 2014, Insituto National de Aprendizaje, INA in Naranjo, Costa Rica

Catering was provided

The practical part of the seminar, constructing a wetland

Group photograph with the constructed wetland

Puerto Viejo de Talamanca, Constructed wetland

The company Sat Brilliante S.R.L. delivers and assembles photovoltaic models throughout the world. The company headquarters are in Costa Rica at the heart of the tropical rainforest on the Caribbean coast and near Puerto Viejo.

Because of the topography, the wastewater can flow through the whole wetland in a gradual free flow. Therefore, it does not consume any electricity. That was quite important to the client as they only generate energy with the help of solar panels and did not want to install unnecessary ‘consumers’.

In the middle of the rainforest, a wetland is being constructed

The planting of the facility only consists of indigenous species