Tue, 30 Nov 2021 Today's Paper

Sri Lanka does well on human and economic development relative to environmental damage

8 February 2021 09:09 am - 0     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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Sri Lanka is ranked top among the countries in Asia, which have achieved human and economic development relative to the damage done to their environment and the climate. 


According to a United Nations Development Programme’s (UNDP) Planetary-pressures adjusted Human Development Index (PHDI), Sri Lanka is ranked second best in Asia after Japan for doing good on human development in relation to the impacts on the climate and the environment. 


In addition to the human development, it also looks at the regular measures of development such as economic growth, education and health. 


Sri Lanka has scored little over 0.75 compared to Japan’s nearly 0.80 score in UNDP’s latest PHDI.


As the index is used as a measure of human and economic development in relation to the damage made to the environment, the PHDI is never conclusive for either— human development or environment damage—as it is purely relative in nature. 


Hence the PHDI score or its second best ranking in Asia tells nothing of Sri Lanka’s human development nor the true damage done to its ecological system, when each taken in isolation. 


Hence, the PHDI score is just an abstract figure, which can remotely be used for policy decisions. 


This is because South Korea is ranked at number 3 with a score just shy of 0.75, but the country’s economic development is incomparable to that of Sri Lanka’s, and their policies and actions related to environment and the climate is way ahead of Sri Lanka’s primitive measures. 

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