Yale-based study ranks Malta 'ninth greenest country'

Environmental Performance Index by Yale and Columbia universities and the World Economic Forum gives Malta a score of 88.48 on protecting ecosystems and human health

Malta excels in water and sanitation
Malta excels in water and sanitation

A Yale-based environmental study has ranked Malta in the ninth place – out of 180 countries – on its ability to protect ecosystems and human health.

The Environmental Performance Index (EPI) was carried out by Yale and Columbia universities and the World Economic Forum.

The first prize went to Finland, with a score of 90.68. Malta ranked ninth with a score of 88.48, surpassing France which came in the tenth place.

According to the index, Malta excels in water and sanitation where it was awarded a full score of 100. For air quality, Malta received a score of 94.81 (11th place), while it received 93.98 for biodiversity and habitat.

Malta suffers when it comes to agriculture: with a score of 49.75, Malta is ranked 141 out of all countries surveyed.

A solid 33.17% change from 10 years ago was recorded in water resources, awarding Malta a score of 89.37.

The EPI ranks countries’ performance on high-priority environmental issues in two areas: protection of human health and protection of ecosystems.

Within these two policy objectives the EPI scores country performance in nine issue areas comprised of 20 indicators.

Indicators in the EPI assess countries’ proximity to internationally established targets or, in the absence of agreed-upon targets, how individual nations compare relative to the best performing countries.

"The 2016 EPI’s innovations have shaken up the rankings since the Index’s previous iteration. Finland has taken the top spot, followed by Iceland, Sweden, Denmark, and Slovenia. None of these countries were in the top five in the 2014 EPI. In fact, of these top performers only Sweden cracked the top ten in 2014. Switzerland, 2014’s top performer, has tumbled in this year’s EPI to 16th place overall.

"These big shifts reflect the 2016 Index’s improved methodology and new indicators. Finland’s top ranking stems from its societal commitment to achieve a carbon-neutral society that does not exceed nature’s carrying capacity by 2050, a vision replete with actionable goals and measurable indicators of sustainable development.

"Finland’s goal of consuming 38 percent of their final energy from renewable sources by 2020 is legally binding, and they already produce nearly two-thirds of their electricity from renewable or nuclear power sources.

"The remaining four top performers also boast good energy mixes and smart policies for managing their natural and built environments."

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