With all of the talk about global warming and the risk for depletion of important energy sources, many countries are initiating “go green” projects in order to counteract the negative effects on the environment. Some of these strategies include using renewable energy sources such as solar and wind power, recycling, driving energy efficient vehicles, and using green products. The Environmental Performance Index is used each year to rank countries according to their green effort. The following are the top eight greenest countries in the world for 2013:
Coming in at #1 is Iceland with its beautiful landscape and extraordinary progress in establishing green energy policies. This country has implemented renewable energy sources like geothermal for electricity and hydrogen for heating, both of which make up about 82% of the total energy that is used in the country.
The green, rolling hills of Switzerland come in second on the top eight list of the greenest countries. Both the government and the people work hard to ensure that renewable energy sources and environmentally friendly products are used on a daily basis. There are actually some fees attached to throwing away trash, so the people are more prone to keeping their environment clean. Bicycles are often used for transportation more than cars to cut down on gas emissions.
Although it is small, Costa Rica has done its part in establishing environmentally friendly policies. Renewable energy sources are primarily used to power the country and it has a goal to become carbon neutral by the year 2021. Over the last several years, Costa Rica has made a huge effort to plant over 5 million trees.
Sweden is a large proponent of using eco friendly products and has a goal to stop using fossil fuels by 2020. In addition, the country has protected its forests and uses dust for heating purposes. In order to avoid global warming effects on the population, Sweden has done well to implement many green strategies.
In a large way, Norway’s Northern part has already felt the effects of global warming because of its proximity to the melting arctic. This has encouraged the country to act fast and take major precautions by using renewable energy and increasing recycling activity.
This African country has been a front runner in using eco friendly products and promoting recycling. Most of its energy power comes from hydroelectricity.
France is yet another country that is implementing renewable energy such as solar power. There is actually a tax break from the government for anyone who uses solar panels to produce power for their home. The country also uses organic farming, eco fuels, and eco friendly products.
Austria takes #8 with its large success in green energy policies. Recently, Austria has worked with the Czech Republic on an eco friendly project which involves building gardens along their border. Some of the many plants being grown here include fruits, flowers, trees, and herbs.
These eight countries work hard every day to create a better world for people everywhere to live in. Although the United States is not currently ranked among these elite, this country is doing its part to implement green policies and use renewable energy sources. By working together, people all over the world can help keep this earth safe to live in.