Electric cooperatives without borders - Carolina Country

Electric cooperatives without borders

Electric cooperatives without borders

Linemen from Georgia electric cooperatives helped maintain the electric distribution system at a Costa Rican co-op (Photo by NRECA International).

Two electric cooperatives in Costa Rica, established with help from U.S. electric co-ops, recently marked their 50th anniversaries.

Leaders from the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA) visited the country to honor the work of Coopelesca (Cooperativa de Electrificacion Rural de San Carlos) and Coopeguanacaste (Cooperativa de Electrificacion Rural de Guanacaste).

In 1965, NRECA International helped form these two electric cooperatives with funding provided by the U.S. Agency for International Development. Coopelesca, headquartered in Quesada, San Carlos, serves the north central region of Costa Rica. Coopeguanaste, headquartered in Santa Cruz, serves the northwestern coastal Guanacaste region of the country. Both have been critical engines for economic growth to their communities. Collectively, they serve more than 145,000 member-owners and own more than 50 megawatts of hydroelectric and wind energy generation resources.

NRECA is the national service organization that represents the nation’s more than 900 private, not-for-profit, consumer-owned electric cooperatives, which provide service to 42 million people in 47 states. NRECA’s international program — NRECA International — has been working in developing countries since 1962. Its global commitment has helped provide electricity to more than 110 million people in 42 countries.

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