Only four countries are on track to reach net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050: Botswana, Denmark, Namibia and the UK
Sebastian Block Munguía, Yale University; and Lorena Rivera León, WIPO
Originally published by the World Intellectual Property Organization.
Ecological sustainability is essential for innovation; and innovation is essential for ecological sustainability.
Europe is still leading the EPI rankings. However, some developing economies are also making progress towards achieving sustainability goals
Top three Environmental Performance by income group*
- One example is the indicators measuring the health effects of PM2.5 exposure, waste management sustainability, and fisheries sustainability, all of which have increased by less than 5% over the last decade.
- The EPI report also found that the indicator measuring countries’ progress towards reaching zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 received the lowest global score, with only 1.4 out of 100. Extrapolating the recent trend in greenhouse gas emissions, it was projected that only four countries (Botswana, Denmark, Namibia, and the United Kingdom) would achieve zero emissions by 2050. In all other 176 countries assessed, emissions are still increasing or not decreasing quickly enough.
Mixed global progress across the EPI’s indicators
Big strides in marine biodiversity protection: Chile, Seychelles, South Africa and Gabon made the largest improvements towards meeting international targets
- Environmental health indicators measure the quality of the environment for human health (including waste management, air quality, exposure to heavy metals and unsafe sanitation).
- Ecosystem vitality refers to the integrity of natural ecosystems and the services they provide to humanity (including indicators of fisheries’ sustainability, deforestation, and biodiversity protection).
- Climate change indicators measure the growth rate in emissions of different greenhouse gasses, as well as emissions resulting from land use change.