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Taiwan ranks 3rd in Asia in climate change index

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Taiwan has been ranked third in Asia and 32nd in the world rankings of the 2009 Climate Change Performance Index (CCPI) for emissions in 2008, according to the latest report released by Climate Action Network Europe (CAN-Europe) and Germanwatch, two non governmental organizations.

A Council for Economic Planning and Development (CEPD) official said Friday that the report's evaluation of Taiwan is based on research by Lee Chien-ming, an assistant professor at National Taipei University's Institute of Natural Resource Management.

“Taiwan was included in the global analysis for the first time in 2008. The report will help the country better understand the effectiveness of its policy on cutting carbon dioxide emissions and boosting energy saving,” the official said.

According to the report, due to the lack of will to engage themselves more strongly to avoid dangerous climate change, none of the countries listed achieved positions one to three, which put Taiwan in 29th position in a comparative listing of the 57 countries included, which together were responsible for 90 percent of annual global carbon dioxide emissions.

Positions four to six were taken by Sweden, Germany and France, while Sweden, Germany and Iceland were the top three in 2007, it added.

“Not a single country is to be judged as satisfactory with regard to protecting the climate. The specific criterion for this judgment is that, compared with 1990, no country is yet on the path that would be necessary to stay within the 2-degrees limit,” the report said.

Taiwan's third place in Asia put it ahead of Singapore (38), South Korea (41), Japan (43) and China (49) but behind India (7) and Indonesia (27).

In the twelve different indicators classified in three categories of emissions trends, emissions levels and climate policy used to measure the climate change performance, Taiwan was given full marks on renewable energy emissions but ranked poorly in primary energy units per capita, CO2 per primary energy unit, electricity, and manufacturing and construction.

Looking at the other end of the index, Saudi Arabia was at the bottom of the evaluation chart, the CCPI report said, adding that Austria (50), Russia (54), the United States (58), Canada (59) also have worrying results, performing poorly in terms of current emissions levels, emissions trends and in the evaluation of their climate policies.

Introduced to a professional audience for the first time at the 11th Global Climate Summit in Montreal in 2005, the CCPI is presented every year at the United Nations Climate Change Conference to draw as much attention as possible in the observed countries and therefore push forward discussions on climate change.

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