Thursday, February 4, 2010

Real deal on Canada's environmental ranking: Goldstein

For the “bash Canada” crowd of journalists and environmentalists lusting to portray us as the worst country on Earth when it comes to polluting, the release of the third biennial (every two years) Environmental Performance Index (EPI) last week was a mixed blessing.

Canada placed 46th out of 163 countries — actually 46 out of 192, since many nations don’t provide enough environmental data to be ranked in the global survey by researchers from Yale and Columbia universities.
They gather information that countries submit to bodies like the UN and World Bank.
Unlike some others, Canada is extremely transparent in its data reporting, along with Europe and the U.S., notes EPI research director, Christine Kim.
The good news for the Canada bashers is that this year we placed well behind Sweden (4th), Norway (5th), UK (14th) and Germany (17th), which they love to throw in our faces as examples of environmental purity.
Then again, Iceland, where the economy completely collapsed over the past two years, finished first, an indication massive recession is a great way of dramatically reducing pollution emissions fast, although one doubts Icelanders approved.
As for the Canada bashers, alas, 46th out of 192 still isn’t “worst on Earth” (George Monbiot, and his Canadian acolytes, please note) seeing as how we finished one place ahead of Netherlands, not exactly Mordor, and way ahead of the U.S., in 61st.
China, that wonderful environmental leader, according to the greens — placed ... uh ... 121st and since it doesn’t tolerate questioning of its data, or anything else, who knows how much lower it would have been if its information could be trusted?
Ironically, the story the Canada bashers missed was that we dropped precipitously from eighth and twelfth place respectively in the EPI’s 2006 and 2008 rankings. Of course, to know that, they’d have to have read and reported on past EPI rankings, as I have, but why would they, so long as the news about Canada was good? Read more.

No comments:

Post a Comment