Chemical and technological hazards of the Great Metropolitan Area of Costa Rica

  • Ricardo Sánchez-Murillo Universidad Nacional, Costa Rica
  • Gilberto Piedra-Marín Universidad Nacional, Costa Rica
  • Sandra León-Coto Universidad Nacional, Costa Rica
  • Alexander Solís-Delgado Universidad Nacional, Costa Rica
Keywords: Atlas, chemical and technological threat, industry, Great Metropolitan Area, chemical susbtances


The chemical and technological accidents are unexpected events where non- controlled release of one or more chemical substances can affect the security and health of the community involved with negative impacts to the environment. This study presents the first atlas of chemical and technological threats of the greater industries in the Great Metropolitan Area of Costa Rica. In the residential areas of Alajuela and Heredia, the companies that use chloride gas, nitric and hydrochloric acid represented the greatest threat. In Cartago, the most important threat relied on the industries that use chloride gas. In San Jose, hospitals and health centers are under a high pressure due to the conjugation of two factors: high industry density and presence of the most important hospitals in the country. Likewise, the atlas also show the strategic position of many industries which are located on rich aquifers zones; indeed 87 % of the industries in San José are located above aquifers, 33 % in Alajuela, 83 % in Heredia, and 88 % in Cartago. The most affected rivers were found to be Ciruelas, Virilla, Turales, Bermúdez, Torres, Tíribi, Chiquito y Taras.   
How to Cite
Sánchez-Murillo, R., Piedra-Marín, G., León-Coto, S., & Solís-Delgado, A. (2013). Chemical and technological hazards of the Great Metropolitan Area of Costa Rica. Uniciencia, 27(1), 186-214. Retrieved from
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