Bali, December 7th, 2007. Sweden again ranks in first position in the current Climate Change Performance Index (CCPI 2008). However, even those at the top of the class - Sweden achieved two thirds of the total score - only achieve average grades. The index is published annually by Germanwatch and CAN-Europe and compares the climate protection performances of 56 industrialised countries and emerging economies which together account for more than 90 per cent of global energy-related CO2 emissions.
"Sweden benefits from relatively low emissions levels, but its performance is only rated average regarding climate policy and emissions trends", explained Jan Burck, responsible for the Climate Change Performance Index at Germanwatch. "The result does not mean that the 'class winner' delivers outstanding climate protection", he continued. The average evaluation of climate policy of all 56 countries equals 3.9 on a scale of one (very good) to five (very poor). Significant European states such as Germany, Hungary and the United Kingdom were able to maintain their 'leading position' in the Top Ten of the ranking. But it is particularly remarkable that Mexico, India and Brazil represent some major emerging economies in top flight.
National climate policies of almost all countries were rated poor by the consulted experts, seven of the world's biggest CO2 emitters are on the lowest end of the ranking. The worst climate sinners are Saudi Arabia, the USA and Australia who not only have extremely high and mounting emissions levels, but also employ insufficient and inadequate climate policies.
"The international community is still failing to comply with their responsibilities regarding climate protection", stated Matthias Duwe, Director of Climate Action Network Europe. "They have not set themselves firmly on the path of limiting global warming to less than two degrees celsius and to avoid the destabilisation of global climate ", continued Duwe.
The index's ranking of the largest emerging economies differs significantly from country to country. In the case of Mexico, its constructive international and national climate policy and its relatively favourable emissions trends contribute to its positive evaluation. India's still very low emissions level and the positive assessment of recent developments in national climate policy account for its good result. China, however, ranks far behind at 40th place due to its significantly higher emissions level and high emissions trends. Nevertheless, the country's serious efforts to enhance energy efficiency and promote renewable energies as well as the recognisable turnaround in national climate and environmental policy within the last two years meant that it already jumped up four places in this year's ranking from last year's position. "China's relatively positive political assessment gives hope that emission growth will slow down in the future", explains Christoph Bals, Executive Policy Director of Germanwatch. This puts it far ahead of some countries in the ranking.
The Climate Change Performance Index (CCPI) which is annually published by Germanwatch and CAN-Europe compares the climate protection performances of 56 industrialised countries and emerging economies, that together account for more than 90 per cent of global CO2 emissions. Oekom research, a renowned rating agency, uses the index as a basis for financial rankings.
The index is published for the third time this year in Bali, and it was updated referring to the latest available data. The CCPI allows for a well-founded country comparison since it not only considers absolute emission figures provided by the International Energy Agency (IEA) but also puts significant weight on emissions trend (30 per cent) and includes an assessment of climate policy (20 per cent). A survey among national climate experts complements the quantitative part of the index and provides a detailed evaluation of the individual countries' national and international climate policy.
In this year's CCPI, Germany moves up two places and now ranks second behind Sweden. This good evaluation rewards mainly Germany's efforts in this year's international climate protection during the EU spring summit and the G8 conference.
In comparison to last year's results, Denmark, Japan, and Ireland experienced the largest decline in their ranks, while Mexico, Spain, and China moved up most significantly.