The global Environment Performance Index: Scandinavia sweeps the top 4 as the worlds best.

 
 

 

Environmental Performance Index
 Scandinavia leads the world
The Science of a healthy life

 

2016 years Environmental Performance Index tells us in one more way, what we already know, and that is that Scandinavia is one hell of a wonderful place to live. The world's four best nations according to the index are all Scandinavians with Finland, Iceland, and Sweden being the only 3 nations in the world with an EPI score above 90.
( All three still have plenty of room to improve much more, and obviously do need to improve much more. )
And just behind that trio, ranked as number four in the world is Denmark. So, just what is the Environmental Performance Index? Read on to find out.  


 


 
 




music of the day while you are reading our article
Hinterlands by Netherbird










 
 

Quality of life, society and Earth in one little Index.






The Epi Index is measured across 9 important metrics which, when put together try to evaluate how well various nations perform during our modern day Anthropocene era.
Those areas are.
Health Impacts, Air Quality, Water and Sanitation.
Water resources, Agriculture, Forests, Fisheries, Biodiversity and Habitat.
And finally Climate and Energy.

The absolutely most interesting thing with the environmental performance index is without a doubt the combined quality of life impact that each nation has on a global scale since that is truly what the index evaluates. That global impact is of course, what actually matters now that we live in this global era of Anthropocene. What you do, your way of life is not just locally important anymore. The things you guys do in your own city and country is not just about that small block or you and your neighbor. In our modern, connected world, for better and worse, what you and your city and country do, and how you conduct yourself matters globally for all of us.





Climate change, sustainability, individual health, the way we impact ourselves and each other. These are the real hallmarks of how well a nation is performing in our mutually shared modern day world. And that is how we as humans define our own shared future. Our mutual future of our global and individual well-being, healthy lives, food security, and clean air. Poverty and hunger. Improved food quality and nutrition, Equality, improved health and longevity. Modern, clean energy, non-polluted safe water, cars and industries, and food producers that do not destroy our health and planet.


Climate change, in the words of UN Secretary-General Ban-Ki Moon, is the “defining issue of our era,”.

And he is right because all these things directly tie into each other. Just as how we as individuals, directly and indirectly, affect each other all around this beautiful pagan planet.




 

Planet Earth



[ A Pagan Paradise

Based on

Science,

Health &

Human needs. ]

 





Looking at the index we can see that between 2000 to 2014, Paraguay lost a bat shit crazy 24.6 percent of its entire tree cover, more than anywhere else on Earth. And that is certainly not how to do it. We need sustainable, thriving forests. Trees are vital when it comes to maintaining a thriving wildlife and a healthy nation. Healthy thriving forests are also crucial when it comes to mitigating climate change.



Gladly tho, Paraguay has, since 2012, seen a 40 percent decrease in tree cover loss, aided by the Zero Deforestation Law and other newly minted conservation initiatives.
However, to recover from the current situation that progress has to be maintained and incrementally improved even further upon.





Why does deforestation matter? Well, as I mentioned earlier. Thriving and healthy forests are vital to our ecosystem and biodiversity.
From a huge amount of animal species to berries and plants, water quality and amount, climate change mitigation, and the air we breathe.

Did you know for instance that deforestation accounts for as much as 14% of yearly worldwide CO2 emissions.


Having said that, it is important to note that plenty of countries do quite a lot to manage a healthy and continually thriving forest, making sure that their pulp and paper industries are as sustainable and responsible as possible. But even so, it takes quite a few years of perpetual effort to maintain and regrow what has already been destroyed, and a lot of species and biodiversity loss can never be replaced.

The biggest reason for deforestation is however not the pulp and paper industry but agriculture. Making it one more reason why our global agriculture and food industry need to rapidly adopt modern, sustainable practices.




 

The future belongs to a sustainable Earth





When it comes to climate and energy one of many positive standouts is Costa Rica which managed to achieve a 99 percent renewable energy generation already in 2015. All while other nations like Rwanda still rely on charcoal and firewood which together accounted for 75 percent of the country’s 2012 energy consumption.
Which of course is pretty bad!.

But, what is not bad at all is what is about to happen in Rwanda.



You see, Rwanda have an ambitious goal to provide it's entire population with 75% renewable energy no later than 2030.

And in the cold north, the Scandinavian nations are all doing very well when it comes to reaching 100% renewable energy production as soon as possible.
Right now Iceland leads the world with the lowest CO2 emissions per kWh indicator, with almost all of its electricity and heat generation derived from renewable energy sources. For natural reasons, geothermal energy provides more than 87 percent of Iceland's heat and hot water demand.



While it is true that much more can and needs to be done, worldwide, in every single nation, city, and village. What I also see not just in the EPI index for 2016, but everywhere in the world, is a wonderful progression towards something that can only be described as pretty amazing. Just look at Rwanda and the immense change they will do in roughly 10 years time. Things like this happen all over the world every single day. There will always be some negative voices in the world ( like Donald Trump ), there will always be those like him that would wish for the entire world to never progress. But those voices have already lost.

And as such, every single day we make progress together towards a healthier and more sustainable world. A mutual world that is more equal, less wasteful, more developed, efficient, safe and advanced, all at once.

Yes, it took us an awful lot of time to reach this turning point, but now we truly have. More needs to be done, much more. But every day that goes by is one day bringing us closer to a much better world, and that progress towards a much better tomorrow is what I see in this years environmental performance index and the actions of various nations across the world.

You can find links down below to the epi 2016 index and a complete list of all the 180 nations to see how your own country is measuring up.





 



 







 

Photography by NASA. This gorgeous photo of Saturns rings was taken in visible light with the Cassini spacecraft's narrow-angle camera on June 9, 2016.
It was acquired at a distance of approximately 1.1 million miles (1.8 million kilometers) from the rings.The real life scale is 7 miles (11 kilometers) per pixel. And how mindblowing is not that?










 
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Related articles from the world wide web

life from around our mutual tiny sphere

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


NASA, ISS and more.
Official website, NASA.

Photography by Mike Koontz
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The guardian talks about the human, honey bird symbiosis
The guardian.com

The Environmental Performance Index
EPI 2016

The Environmental Performance Index, Country rankings
EPI 2016, Country rankings

Starbucks sugar crisis - hot flavoured drinks
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Fit and Healthy by Mike Koontz
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Writer and photography

Mike Koontz
Space photo by NASA
To the daisy that is my sun and inspiration

    Google+
   Medium
   My livingroom art


   Author page, MikeKoontz
   
 

Last Few Published Books and Articles

  • This is a story of salt: The female perspective, your health and the 2.5 million people that die worldwide every single year due to excessive salt consumption.

    Quality time needed: 10 minutes


    A story of salt, the outcome, your health & the female picture.
    The Science of healthy living.



    Let us start from the tail of the end. Because we all know that every good tale comes equipped with an end that makes the rest of the story worth reading.
    And as such, the developing story of salt is a story of the roughly 2.5 million deaths around the world which could be prevented each year if global salt consumption was to be reduced below the recommended levels.

  • Health: A life of health and fitness is in truth exactly like a game of chess.

    Quality time needed: 5 minutes


    A life of fitness is a game of chess.
    The Science of healthy living.



    When it comes down to health and fitness, and the cerebral battlefield of chess the simple truth is that they are very much alike.
    There are no unearthly and illogical surprises waiting in the dark of night that will upend and change the actual fabric of the landscape.
    Your opponent can not cast fiery magic and summon demons from the netherworld to do their bidding.
    Instead what we have is a beautifully defined field of known and still developing, yet for now, unknown for you and me facts and variables, and the vast amount of personal choices those known, but evolving facts allows us to make.

    And at every step of that personal journey, chess and fitness will leave you standing as the sole commander, at a vast field made up of pure facts and deductive knowledge and the cause and consequences that every single choice will give birth to.

  • MMA and 'The People that Bleed': Meet Brad Picket.

    Quality time needed: 3 minutes


    The People that bleed
    UFC fighter Brad Picket



    'The people that bleed' is our own label for a series of videos, all produced by UFC, that I feel show us a more real and nuanced, intimate perhaps view of the actual soul and personality of the real human being that makes up the flesh and bone, heart and thoughts behind the bravado and attitude of the MMA fighter persona.

    In this 9 minutes long video, we get to meet Brad Picket (25-14 MMA, 5-9 UFC), a tiny blue collar sized UK based fighter whom retired after his final UFC fight on march 18, 2017 against Brandon Vera.

  • Health & Fitness: The unhealthy reality of the MMA style weight cut. A BBC documentary.

    Quality time needed: 7 minutes


    The Unhealthy Practice of MMA weight cutting
    The Science of a Healthy Life



    For most people getting a bit more fit, and healthy by eating cleaner food and less calories and working out more is a great life improving choice.
    And for most, that will lead to health improving reductions in unhealthy body fat levels and body weight. But as we previously talked about in another article, when you are already in shape, rocking a fit and toned body, eating healthy amounts of healthy food, doing weights and cardio, there comes a limit where dropping even more in body weight and body fat becomes damaging and unhealthy instead of health and fitness improving.

    And beyond that basic reality, you have the insanity of MMA and Boxing weight cuts that far to many pro fighters go through just so they can fight in a weight class that they are to athletic and big to actually be fighting in.
    I am saying that because MMA style weight cutting is not something that anyone interested in health and fitness should ever do.
    Period.

    Neither should pro fighters in my own opinion. In a ideal world you would be the only one doing MMA style weight cuts, allowing you to fight people 20 to 30 lbs smaller than you, with much shorter leg and arm reach, 20+lbs less muscle mass and all the disadvantage that would give them in strength, endurance, strike impact and absorption.
    But you see, when every other fighter do the same weight cut, no one benefits, and everybody suffers from the exact same detrimental and unhealthy exhaustion that MMA style weight cuts are. With less fitness come fight night and potentially worse health for the long haul as the only real result.

  • Health & Fitness: Daily Milk, Fruit and Vegetable consumption, in relation to your mortality rate and health.

    Quality time needed: 10 minutes


    Dairy for the fit and healthy guidelines
    The Science of a Healthy Life



    Time and science continually march forward, and that is a thing of utmost beauty. But that simple fact also requires all of us to keep an open mind towards the way we do our own fit and healthy life so that we can continually adapt and improve as we uncover new layers of scientifically established health and fitness knowledge, and at times, accept that new health and fitness science-based knowledge might force us to change direction and toss out old established "truths".

    So today we find ourselves in a brave new world where a comprehensive Swedish study covering the health impact of daily dairy and fruit consumption ended up giving us so much new scientifically based knowledge about our health and food choices that the time has come to update our "dairy for the fit and healthy guidelines".

    Organic and sugar-free yogurt is still with us, while milk is completely tossed to the side, yes even lactose-free milk gets the boot out my door.
    Why you might ask?
    Well, the answer is simply put science baby, adapt or die :).

    Milk is as far as we understand it right now causing real health issues over time that simply do not happen when you consume sugar-free yogurt or no dairy at all.
    This Swedish study involved close to 200 000 people, and the accumulated data over several years indicates that a high milk consumption shortens individuals life span through increased oxidative stress and inflammation caused by that daily milk consumption.
    And as such milk has to go since yogurt provides all the same high-quality nutrition as milk and thus, all the benefits of dairy can be met through organic, sugar-free yogurt without risking the by now, strongly implicated long-term health issues associated with drinking milk.

  • Science: The Euphoric Flight of Creativity and what hides inside our mind.

    Quality time needed: 3 minutes


    The Essence of Creativity, Hides Inside our Minds
    The Science of a Healthy Life



    The Cerebellum inside our individual selfs will dance its very best only to its own bidding. Hidden away, inside and behind the curtain of what we consider our conscious thoughts, our "little brain" powers on with magnificent poise.

    The small, behind the scene part of what we think of as our brain, is despite its small size (The Cerebellum makes up about 10% of homo sapiens total brain volume) commandeering the majority of our brains neurons.

  • Science: Air Pollution and dementia. Global pollution and unhealth, and the link to mortality rates for children under 5.

    Quality time needed: 7 minutes


    Air Pollution and our health
    The factual Science of a Healthy Life, updated with WHO data, march 2017



    Science continually spits out more reasons in a never ending string as to why anyone interested in their own health and body should also be caring for a sustainable society and world.
    As if it is not already bad enough with modern day life´s annoying sidekick, air pollution, causing cancer, asthma and respiratory diseases and crazy smog in a growing number of cities. We can now add dementia to the list of unpleasant and unhealthy effects that life in any unsustainable society will cause through air pollution.


    Swedish researchers at Umeå University have uncovered compelling evidence for a direct link between air pollution and dementia. The run down is that if you happen to live in an area that leaves you exposed to air pollution you will run a 40 percent greater risk of developing Alzheimer's disease and vascular dementia compared to if you would have chosen to live in a city with healthier air and environment.

  • Book: "Legend of the Stone Cutter'', is a short fantasy adaptation of a man that wished for ever more . Originally written by the authors Brother Grimm with minor writing by Mike Koontz. This is an 1 hour long bed time read.




    Kid Friendly
    UHD book reading video TBA
    Short story ( coffee break bite )
    The legend of the stone cutter is often thought of as a Japanese folktale. But there are also seeds of pagan Europe and other parts of Asia in its many origins and crossroads.

    It weaves the tale of a poor man, plagued with unhappiness for his own lot in life. This man worked as a highly skilled but poorly paid stonecutter, and one day he simply came to the conclusion that enough was enough and that he deserved so much more than who he was. His wish for transformative change came to be through the aid of a supernatural being, and with that his greedy appetite for a world of ever more was awoken, until one day he had come full circle and reached a state of peace with himself.
    Written by no one, and everyone.
    Before this slightly altered version, the German authors Brothers Grimm put their thoughts to the pen, but you also had the Scottish author Andrew Lang writing his very own version of the stone cutter. And there have been countless of Asian authors and Nordic ones throughout history, before and after the Brothers Grimm. And as such, I am sure, many others that told their own version of this old folktale, because like the wind, this is an ageless story about life and man, and like the wind I am sure that it will both transform and stay the same for thousands of years to come.
    Enjoy the read!.

    Photography and web adaptation and minor writing by Mike Koontz
    2017, a Norse View Imaging and Publishing

  • Healthy living: When protein face off with protein, what comes out on top? Red meat, plants, nuts, dairy?. And how will it impact health, strength and even the effects of old age.

    Quality time needed: 6 minutes


    Meat vs Plant when Protein gets to battle Protein & age.
    The Science of a healthy Life



    In a recently published study, we got to take a pretty comprehensive look at nearly 3,000 men and women all aged between 19 and 72.
    The study participants complete protein intake as well as all the various protein and food sources they consumed was measured. Including various dairy products, red meat and the healthier fish & chicken and plant-based protein sources. Beyond that the study also made sure to measure each participants lean muscle mass, their bone density, and individual strength.

    The takeaway?.
    When looking at the complete study, it was evident ( and to no surprise ) that the less protein you consumed the lower amount of muscle mass and strength. But to the surprise of some, the type of protein each person favored did not have any impact on their strength and musculoskeletal health, and there were no differences based on gender or age group.

    So keep active, eat healthy and make sure to include enough protein, and yeah, skip that red meat based protein right away because it provides zero health and fitness benefit for anyone.

  • Book: "Ligeia'', is a strange tale of love and those who cross back from the realm of the dead. Written by author Edgar Allan Poe. This is an 1 hour long bed time read.




    Suitable for teens and up. Explicit storytelling and events.
    UHD book reading video TBA
    Short story (One Evening Bed time read)
    Ligeia is an hour long read, taking us through a haunted dream when the beloved dead will rise again and make the journey back across the river, from the realm of the dead. And perhaps in this story it is in truth that we get to meet the tormented man that was Edgar Allan Poe.
    Enjoy the read!.

    Photography and web adaptation: Mike Koontz
    2017, a Norse View Imaging and Publishing

  • Space & Science: The flight across the black void and Kaguyas observations of Earth and the way we shower our lunar friend with oxygen.

    Quality time needed: 7 minutes


    On continuous gusts of solar wind mixed with terrestrial ions Earth shower the moon with earthborn oxygen
    The Science of Life



    Outside our blue wonders shielded atmosphere, the coldness of space is filled with the burning solar wind. The dust and speckles of stars, radiation, vacuum and alien stuff like dark matter and gigantic black holes. It is a marvel of glorious destruction and life that continuously mix and merge outside our calm home, organic chaos tearing down and building new life things across the vastness of time and our Universe.

    And amongst it all, somehow, each month, Earth fires up its magnetic shields as we position ourselves between the sun and the moon, and for five whole day´s we Earthlings shower our cute little friend with Earthbound oxygen and organic matter.
    In other words, we colonize and shape the very fabric of the alien entity we call the moon with Earthborn biological life and air, organic matter traveling from our blue marble all the way to the moon through the dark void on the winds of the sun.

  • The global Environment Performance Index: Scandinavia sweeps the top 4 as the worlds best.

    Quality time needed: 8 minutes
     
     

     

    Environmental Performance Index
     Scandinavia leads the world
    The Science of a healthy life

     

    2016 years Environmental Performance Index tells us in one more way, what we already know, and that is that Scandinavia is one hell of a wonderful place to live. The world's four best nations according to the index are all Scandinavians with Finland, Iceland, and Sweden being the only 3 nations in the world with an EPI score above 90.
    ( All three still have plenty of room to improve much more, and obviously do need to improve much more. )
    And just behind that trio, ranked as number four in the world is Denmark. So, just what is the Environmental Performance Index? Read on to find out.

  • Book: "1984''. Part 3 of 3 in this nightmarish dystopian world by author George Orwell.




    Suitable for teens and up. Explicit storytelling and events.
    UHD book reading video TBA
    Weekend read (Three Nights Bed time read)
    In the age of Donald Trumps alternative facts and war on science, perhaps George Orwell will turn out to be quite the oracle.
    Enjoy this dystopian read!.
    If you missed part 1 and 2, you can start reading the story from the beginning here.

    Author, George Orwell. Photography and web adaptation: Mike Koontz
    2017, a Norse View Imaging and Publishing

  • The science and health of space and the human body, all the things you can also expect from your future romantic, off world date. Updated.

    Quality time needed: 18 minutes


    To Dine and Kiss in Space
    Making love in zero gravity
    The Science of a healthy life



    Making love, off world.
    And some of the many wondrous and perhaps flat out strange things you can expect to encounter during your future romantic, space date.
    In our rapidly approaching near future and a few fortunate souls present day reality, the perplexing realities of dating far away from planet Earth will no longer be confined to the silvery screens of yesterday.

    Soon a rapidly growing number of people will be able to prepare and plan for romantic weekend dates out and away from Earth´s atmosphere. But beyond the tantalizing, and highly romantic aspect of kissing high up above as you look down back on this blue marble. What else is there to going off the reservate and into the dark unknown?. What about the little everyday things when you kiss, hold hands and make love beneath the stars, way out in space.

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