Ireland's environmental performance slips

Issues surrounding water pollution mean that Ireland's environmental standing in the world slipped in 2007, a new study has shown.

The World Economic Forum in Davos released its Environmental Performance Index (EPI) recently, the website reported.

This was developed based on 25 indicators across six established policy categories. These were environmental health, air pollution, water resources, biodiversity and habitat, productive natural resources, and climate change.

According to the site, the EPI identifies broadly-accepted targets for environmental performance and measures how close each country comes to these goals.

The data showed that Ireland was ranked at number 34 in the list, down from tenth in 2006. In particular, the recent news about drinking water pollution and threats of legal action by the European Commission to enforce water standards affected the country's ranking.

Sweden, Norway, Finland, and Costa Rica performed well in the rankings, while Mali, Mauritania, Sierra Leone, Angola, and Niger were placed bottom for their environmental performance.

Recent figures from the Irish Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) showed that greenhouse gas emissions in the country dropped by 0.8% between 2005 and 2006.

James Cooper



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