Welcome to the Earth.Org Global Sustainability Index, where Earth.Org examines the policies and actions regarding the environment of every nation on earth. Combining the most respected global indexes on pollution, climate change, policy, energy, oceans, biodiversity we have produced an overall Global Index, which will be updated annually. This is the Global Sustainability Index scorecard for Iran.

Despite many theoretically effective policies, an issue hampering their implementation in Iran is corruption, which is prevalent across the economy including in the fossil fuel sector. Another issue hampering the country’s climate commitments is the sanctions that have been placed on it. Authorities have made it clear that they do think they can cut emissions with sanctions in place. Iran’s NDC states that any climate action depends on the removal of these sanctions, which make it more difficult to access project financing and technology transfer required to meet its renewable energy goals. 

In May 2017, the government launched a National Strategic Plan on Climate Change, which was originally intended as an appendix to the current sixth five-year development plan, which runs from 2017 to 2021 and does not itself mention climate change. However, it was not approved by the cabinet. Instead, a series of mitigation targets for 2021 were brought in, which include an increased share of renewables to 5% of installed generation capacity, cutting overall gas flaring by 90% and decreasing energy consumption in the building sector by 5%. However, as it stands, it is unlikely that Iran will meet its target for clean energy by 2021.

Global Sustainability Index scorecard for Iran

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Earth.Org Global Sustainability Index Ranking image description: Iran Rankings – Policy: 19, Pollution: 80, Climate Change: 57, Oceans: 114, Biodiversity: 116, Energy: 44, Earth.Org Global Sustainability Index Ranking 187.