Cape Verde understands that a care for the environment is important. Over 500,000 people live in this relatively poor country in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. The country’s concern for the environment is prompted by previous droughts and the consequent risk of hunger. Cape Verde is not wealthy in terms of natural resources, but relies heavily on tourism. The implementation of environmentally conscious schemes is a challenge that the Cape Verdeans could be excused for ignoring. Common sense has prevailed however, consequently the country has embraced a care for the environment.
Cape Verde is currently working towards obtaining half of its energy requirements from renewable sources. This is an exciting prospect that many other countries should copy. Currently 25% of the country’s electricity comes from wind turbines located on the four largest islands. There are also solar panel installations, so already approximately 33% of the country’s energy comes from these renewables. Cape Verde is wanting to obtain all of its energy requirements from renewables, but in addition to produce a surplus. That surplus will then be exported to other countries in West Africa.
Wildlife found in these islands is subject to protection and conservation. Possibly most notably the turtles that make their nests and lay their eggs in the sand dunes. Sand dunes are found on most of the 10 islands; however in the past, turtles were hunted and slaughtered. The five species of turtle that are found in the waters around the islands are still endangered. There are various projects in Cape Verde, working to protect these gentle creatures.
The ‘Ethical Traveller’ is an Earth Island Institute project. It compiles lists of ten countries in the Developing World that they consider to be the most ethical holiday destinations. Cape Verde is in this list. The Institute chose Cape Verde as the Most Ethical and Forward-Thinking Country in the Developing World. Cape Verde also comes second in the Reporters Without Borders World Press Freedom Index 2016.