Bhutan is the first carbon-negative country in the world

Sushree Behera

Bhutan, the tiny landlocked country nestled in the Himalayas, is making headlines around the world. Despite its size and limited resources, Bhutan has managed to become a carbon-negative country.

But how did such a small nation achieve this remarkable goal? From renewable energy sources to eco-forestry projects, find out what makes Bhutan such an exemplary model of a carbon-negative nation.

How Bhutan became a carbon-negative country

Bhutan is a small landlocked nation located in the Eastern Himalayas. It has become an example of sustainability and environmental protection for the world, becoming a carbon-negative country. With its commitment to renewable energy sources and its protection of forests and natural resources, Bhutan shows that it can be both environmentally conscious and economically prosperous. 

1. Bhutan’s commitment to sustainability and renewable energy 

Bhutan’s commitment to sustainability and renewable energy began in the 1970s. It is the time when it declared that maintaining a healthy environment was of utmost importance. Throughout the years, the country has remained committed to reducing its carbon footprint.

They did it by increasing their reliance on renewable and clean energy sources such as solar, hydro, and wind power. The country has committed to being carbon-neutral by 2020. They aiming to generate 100% of its energy from renewable sources within a decade. 

2. Protection of forests and natural resources 

Bhutan has long recognized the importance of preserving its forests and natural resources. With more than 70% of its land area protected, the country has some of the most pristine landscapes and biodiverse forests in the world.

In order to safeguard these forests, the government has put in place a number of programs, such as strict logging laws enforcement, reforestation initiatives, and protected areas. These measures have helped Bhutan become one of the few countries in the world that have been able to stop deforestation and protect forests

3. Eco-friendly initiatives by the government 

The Bhutanese government also understands the importance of reducing emissions from other sources. The country has implemented a number of eco-friendly initiatives, including incentives for businesses to switch to renewable energy sources and tax incentives for electric vehicles.

The government has also started a number of public awareness campaigns about the importance of preserving the environment and reducing emissions. 

4. The growing popularity of electric vehicles 

Electric vehicles are becoming increasingly popular in Bhutan, offering numerous environmental benefits without sacrificing performance or convenience.

The country’s tax incentives for electric vehicles have made them more affordable to the general public, encouraging many people to switch from petrol and diesel cars. In addition, the government has also installed a number of charging stations throughout the country in order to make it simpler for individuals to charge their cars. 

Future goals of Bhutan in terms of sustainability and carbon reduction

As Bhutan continues to move towards a more sustainable and responsible future, the country is committed to reducing its carbon emissions and adopting greener, renewable energy sources. Bhutan has set ambitious goals to achieve this goal of becoming net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. 

Furthermore, the Himalayan nation is working towards developing a low-carbon economic system based on renewable energy sources and energy efficiency. To this end, Bhutan has already made strides in the development of hydroelectric power plants. This project is expected to increase its output by almost 40% between 2021 and 2023

The country is also committed to preserving its forests and natural resources. It is working to reduce its deforestation rate to zero by 2030 and aims to restore more than 26% of the country’s landmass. Moreover, Bhutan has also pledged a minimum of 60% forest coverage in the nation at all times. 

What lesson does Bhutan’s journey to sustainability hold for other nations

The journey of Bhutan toward sustainability is a powerful reminder to the rest of the world that environmental protection and economic prosperity can go hand-in-hand. Bhutan’s commitment to sustainability and the rest of the world is inspired by environmental conservation.

The country’s focus on renewable energy sources, protection of forests and natural resources, eco-friendly initiatives by the government, and the growing popularity of electric vehicles are all helping to make Bhutan a carbon-negative country. 

By understanding Bhutan’s journey, we can learn valuable lessons on sustainable development. Environmental protection can be applied in other countries and regions around the world using the same strategy. Bhutan has put nature and its inhabitants before gross economic metrics by implementing policies. This ultimately measures progress using Gross National Happiness instead of GDP.

Read also: Carbon footprint: what is it and how to reduce it

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