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Denmark, Switzerland and Britain leading the way in global energy efficiency

September 2013, 28
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Denmark, Switzerland and Britain were amongst just five countries that scored highly in a global energy efficiency study, it has been revealed. 
The report from the World Energy Council has been released ahead of the imminent World Energy Congress due to be held in Daegu in three weeks’ time, and outlines the need for many countries to improve their commitment to sustainable energy.
European Union meeting

Switzerland tops list

The Energy Sustainability Index is a survey of 129 countries which are rated on their energy policies. More specifically, the Index measures how well the three different energy issues are balanced; the trio is what the Council calls the Trilemma. 

The Trilemma is made up from:

  • energy security ( a supply that is safe from danger)
  • energy equity (a supply which is affordable and accessible)
  • environmental sustainability (the impact of both the production and its use on the environment)

The 129 countries which were part of the survey were judged on a set of 60 different criteria, which were assessed individually and the compiled to reach an overall score. 

Switzerland was the nation to score the highest, but along with the other four countries in the top five, the UK, Spain, Denmark and Sweden, a ranking of AAA status was awarded. This was achieved by all five nations scoring top marks in each of the categories within the Trilemma.

Switzerland leads
At the opposite end of the spectrum, Zimbabwe and Benin scored D's across the board. Other countries to score poorly included India, Yemen, Nicaragua and Lebanon who failed to notch up anything other than C's and D's. 

Western and eastern superpowers China and the US had mixed results. China scored top marks in its energy security but was rooted to the bottom in terms of energy equity and environmental sustainability. The US fared slightly better, coming in at 15th overall, one place better than the previous year but still requiring improvement on environment sustainability, scoring no higher than a C.

The closest neighbour of the US, Canada put its rival firmly in its place by scoring much more highly, a very respectable 6th overall, an improvement of 4 places. 

Despite not scoring as highly as they might have hoped in the Sustainability Index, China, the US and Germany were all recognised by the World Council for their recent attempts to cut their carbon output. 

More global commitment required

The 2013 Energy Sustainability Index published by the World Energy Council was released in tandem with the World Energy Trilemma report 'Time to get real' which highlights the lack of cohesiveness in global policies on the subject of sustainable energy and efficiency.
One of the particular concerns addressed in the report is the possibility of increasing reliance upon dirty fossil fuels, as a result of moving away from nuclear power. 

The Trilemma report was compiled following interviews with policy makers, governments, banks, environment and energy ministers, and experts from in excess of 25 different countries. The consensus was that there is no single approach being adopted in order to address climate change and introduce a combined energy system framework which could be implemented worldwide. 

Despite the current divisiveness, the chairman of the World Energy Council praised the consensus which was reached and suggested that the up-coming Congress would be the perfect arena to reach a 'shared vision' and agree on 'smart, pragmatic solutions to securing a sustainable energy future'.

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