Double trouble on carbon emissions

  • 2007-07-16
  • By Mike Collier
TALLINN 's Just days after the Estonian government said it would challenge carbon emissions reductions being forced upon it by Europe, the country has taken bottom spot in a survey of carbon-friendliness.

July 12 it was announced that Estonia would formally contest the European Commission's decision to reduce the quota of industrial carbon dioxide emissions for the next five-year period. Under the Commission's plan Estonia would get a quota of 12.7 million tons per year.

The government decided to file a lawsuit to have the Commission's decision annulled, claiming that the decision was based on incorrect assumptions.

However, July 16 Estonia was been ranked at the bottom of a table comparing the relative levels of carbon use in 30 European countries against the physical and emotional well-being of their citizens.

Iceland, Sweden and Norway occupied the top three positions of the table compiled by the the New Economics Foundation and Friends of the Earth, with Estonia at the bottom. Lithuania achieved 25th place with Latvia a creditable 11th.

Ranked immediately ahead of Estonia were Luxembourg, Bulgaria and Greece.

Researchers analyzed relative levels of carbon use in relation to the physical and emotional well-being of citizens in 30 European countries since the 1960s, looking at the use of fossil fuels in energy production, life satisfaction, average life expectancy, and crime.

The report claims Estonia suffers high levels of inequality, crime and a "woefully inefficient" energy sector due to its reliance on oil shale.