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Business News/ Opinion / Views/  Denial will not help

Denial will not help

Energy shortages have worsened our economic trade-offs, and going green will be a stiff challenge

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India has been rated the worst performer among 180 countries, ranked by an index of environmental performance put out by Yale and Columbia universities for 2022. Denmark tops the chart, with a score of 77.9, while India’s 18.9 is not just the lowest; it marks a decadal decline. The index uses 40 indicators in three categories. On ecosystem vitality, our rating was dragged down by a biodiversity drop, most acutely in species habitat, compounded by wetland, grassland and tree-cover losses. Fisheries, a strong point, saw a fall over the past decade. On health, while air quality was a big let-down, we notched up gains in sanitation and drinking water. We did rather poorly on climate policy, mostly with carbon emissions to blame.

As is its wont, the government may be tempted to reject these findings as flawed. Every such study would have something that can be challenged. But the shock of a bottom rank, deserved or not, mustn’t detract attention from a need to double down on climate action. Energy shortages have worsened our economic trade-offs, and going green will be a stiff challenge. We must get our act together. And acknowledging a problem squarely is key to solving it.

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Published: 07 Jun 2022, 11:18 PM IST
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