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Sweden has been ranked as having among the best emissions and climate policies in the world in a prestigious report released at the ongoing climate summit in Cancún.
Sweden came in at number five in the Climate Change Performance Index, after Brazil. However, the index left the first three spots open as no country deserved to be top placed.
The report evaluates and ranks the 57 highest-emitting countries based on their policies. The awareness of climate change has increased and national actions have improved in a number of countries, the report point out.
"The European Union has some leading countries, namely Sweden, Norway, Germany, France and UK. Here, performance rankings are either increasing or remaining the same, but are overall relatively good”, Germanwatch and project partner Climate Action Network Europe (CAN Europe) wrote.
The organizations said that that no country deserves to be placed in the top three spots, which are reserved for countries that are doing enough to stay below the goal of a 1.5- degree average global warming limit.
Sweden came in ahead of Norway and Germany. Saudi Arabia, Kazakhstan, Australia, and Canada ranked last of the 57 listed countries.
The same day as the report was released the Swedish Society for Nature Conservation urged the Swedish government to step up its green efforts.
"We hope now that the government will regain the top position by imposing tougher economic means of control on the domestic front and through showing another initiative push on the international stage," Svante Axelsson, general secretary of Swedish Society for Nature Conservation (Naturskyddsföreningen), wrote in a statement. "Sweden also needs to drop the view that climate action must be cost-effective in the short term and instead look to long-term competitiveness”.
The world’s two biggest emitters, China and the USA, have dropped a few ranks compared to last year, with China now ranked 56th and the USA 54th.
“China has recently started improving its national climate policies, including legislation on renewable energy, which has already made it the world leader in wind energy investments,” said Matthias Duwe, Director at CAN Europe. “This represents a trend toward strong national climate policy that we have seen throughout the CCPI this year.”
A clear exception to the trend toward strong national climate policy is the USA, where the Senate’s blockage of climate legislation resulted in a lower ranking, the organization slammed. The US shows a very poor performance concerning per capita emissions and climate policy.
“The Obama Administration will now have to utilise existing clean air laws to regulate emissions and reverse the USA’s downward trend in this index,” Duwe added.
The Climate Change Performance Index 2011 can be downloaded at www.germanwatch.org/ccpi
Last Updated (Tuesday, 07 December 2010 10:49)