India nosedives to finish last in Environment Performance Index
India has fallen behind the rest of the world in terms of environmental performance. The country is ranked lowest among 180 nations in the recently issued Environment Performance Index (EPI) -2022, an international evaluation methodology that examines a country's environmental health and sustainability. The report has given India a score of 18.9, which is even lower than Pakistan, Bangladesh, Vietnam, and Myanmar.
- Despite measures like Sashakt Bharat, Swachh Bharat-Swasth Bharat, Satat Bharat-Sanatan Bharat, and many more, India was rated last in EPI 2022.
- For a long time, the Centre has been working relentlessly toward the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
- However, India would require at least $2.64 trillion to fulfill the SDGs, as per the report by Standard Chartered SDG Investment Map,
In partnership with the Yale Center for Environmental Law and Policy and Columbia University, the World Economic Forum launched the EPI, a biennial index, in 2002. EPI uses 40 performance measures across 11 issue areas to rank 180 nations. These indicators show how efficiently countries could establish environmental policy targets. Overall, EPI indicates which country is best in addressing environmental challenges.
The report says India's low EPI score suggests that the country has to pay more attention to sustainability and prioritize air and water quality, biodiversity, and climate change. Meanwhile, the report says India also ranks poorly in terms of rule of law, corruption control, and government performance. In 2020, India was rated 168th with a score of 27.6, while Denmark was ranked first.
The report revealed that good policy results are also associated with wealth (GDP per capita). It means economic prosperity enables nations to invest in result-oriented policies. "This trend is especially true for issue categories under the umbrella of environmental health," it said. The report adds that building the necessary infrastructure for initiatives like providing clean drinking water and reducing air pollution yields good results.
"In general, high scorers exhibit long-standing policies and programs to protect public health, preserve natural resources, and decrease greenhouse gas emissions," says EPI-2022. According to the statistics in the report, nations that have made concentrated efforts to decarbonize their electrical sectors have achieved the most progress in combating climate change. They also gain the corresponding advantages for ecosystems and human health, it added.