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 Norway.
Norway has made great strides in mitigating the climate crisis, but it may still be insufficient to limit global warming to below 2 degrees Celsius by 2100.
Its Parliament voted to divest its Government Pension Fund investments from coal, oil and gas exploration and production in June 2019. Some of the resources will instead be invested in unlisted renewable energy projects.
In 2017, Norway’s electricity generation was almost exclusively powered by renewable energy- almost 96% of electricity was generated by hydro power plants and around 2% from wind farms. 2.3% was from thermal power plants. However, the country is also the world’s fifth largest exporter of crude oil, but its offshore drilling activities have been subject to a carbon tax since 1991. In 1999, these were increased and in 2005, Norway joined the EU ETS (Emissions Trading Scheme). By 2018, around 80% of greenhouse gas emissions were taxed.
- Norway aims to become a ‘low carbon society” by 2050, through a 80-95% emissions reduction below 1990 levels.
- They also lead the world in electric vehicles share, representing 56% of vehicles sold in the first half of 2019 for an overall 8% of the national fleet.
- In June 2019, the Parliament voted to divest from oil and gas exploration, and coal. These are all good steps on climate but under current trends, emissions will only be cut by a highly insufficient 12% by 2030.
You might also like: Global Emissions (2016)
Biodiversity, Policy: Sachs, J., Schmidt-Traub, G., Kroll, C., Lafortune, G., Fuller, G. (2019): Sustainable Development Report 2019. New York: Bertelsmann Stiftung and Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN).
Oceans: Halpern, Benjamin S., et al. “An index to assess the health and benefits of the global ocean.” Nature 488.7413 (2012): 615-620.
Pollution: Wendling, Z. A., Emerson, J. W., Esty, D. C., Levy, M. A., de Sherbinin, A., et al. (2018). 2018 Environmental Performance Index. New Haven, CT: Yale Center for Environmental Law & Policy. https://epi.yale.edu/
Climate Change: Climate Change Performance Index; Jan Burck, Ursula Hagen, Niklas Höhne, Leonardo Nascimento, Christoph Bals, ISBN 978-3-943704-75-4, 2019
Energy: Enerdata –World Energy Statistics – Yearbook.