With annual emission still rising1, so is the temperature, up around 1.2°C since the mid-19th century. As global warming increases, so do the associated impacts. These include Artic ice melt and rising sea levels, ocean acidification, disruption to hydrological cycles, desertification and higher risks from extreme weather events. We can see evidence that the world is becoming increasingly focussed on climate change. Yet some countries look better placed than others and so this report addresses the following question: which countries are more resilient in the face of rising climate risks?
This report analyses the climate risk for 77 developed, emerging and frontier market countries, utilising 92 separate data points to explore 49 indicators. The three best-placed countries, the most resilient, are dominated by wealthy, European nations. Sweden ranks first followed by France and Finland. The three most vulnerable countries are dominated by those in warmer latitudes, Nigeria ranks as the most vulnerable followed by Bangladesh and Cote d’Ivoire. While the final rankings are interesting, the report highlights that relevant risks can lie in individual data points. These include new indicators which explore the dynamics around fossil fuels, regulatory quality, gender equality, health risk preparedness, biodiversity loss and sea level-rise.
The report initially looks at how embedded carbon is in national economies, it follows on to discuss which countries are at greater risk from physical impacts associated with global warming. The report highlights which countries have the policy, institutional quality, financial strength and informed population to respond to climate risks. Finally, the report discusses how countries are placed to make economic profit from cleantech as the world decarbonises. The report highlights that decarbonisation requires technical innovation, economic support, policy formation and delivery. Yet there are opportunities for countries which move quickly and prudently, to protect societies and even to enhance economic outlook.
1 2020 is a slight anomaly, down c.7 per cent, due to the collapse in economic activity associated with the pandemic, but emissions in many countries are already bouncing back.