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 Spain.
Spain has already warmed about 1.5 degrees Celsius- more than the global average of 1.1 degrees Celsius- since the Industrial Revolution. Further, a study found that without urgent climate action, regional temperature increase will be 2.2°C in 2040, possibly exceeding 3.8°C in some regions in 2100. With the lower end of these predictions, rainfall will drop as much as 10-15%, with an increase in droughts and desertification. However, in its most northern regions, Spain may experience severe flooding due to increased storm activity.
Spain has announced an ambitious $53 billion plan that will see it become carbon neutral by 2050. The plan includes working towards producing 74% of its electricity from renewables like solar and wind by 2030, and 100% by 2050. Spain also closed all of its unprofitable coal mines at the end of 2018, although it still imports coal. Finally, in 2019, Spain was one of eight EU member states to call on the bloc to raise its carbon dioxide reduction target for 2030 from 40% to 55%.
- Spain’s goals and actions have been deemed insufficient in the latest rankings, due to a lack of renewable share increase and no ambitious plans to decarbonise the sector.
- Since the 23rd of January, Spain has declared a state of climate and environmental emergency. Following the decree, they intend to adopt 30 priority measures, including a road-map to net-zero emissions by 2050 built around renewable energy.
- Carbon-neutral agriculture, zero-carbon transport systems, removal of tax benefits for fossil-fuel industries, and bans on fracking and hydrocarbons are also parts of the plan not ranked it.
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.