Hanoi ranked below average in environmental protection

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A study on environmental and climate protection covering 22 major Asian cities ranks Hanoi below average, electronics giant Siemens AG announced Monday in a press release.


The Asian Green City Index, compiled over the past few months by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU), includes Hanoi in the same category as cities like Manila in the Philippines.


Singapore tops the index, which is based on the cities' environmental performance in eight categories: "energy and CO2, land use and buildings, transport, waste, water, sanitation, air quality and environmental governance," the press release said.


The "above average" group includes the three Japanese cities of Tokyo, Osaka, and Yokohama as well as Hong Kong, while Bangkok and Beijing are listed as "average."


Pakistan's largest city, Karachi, is at the bottom of the index, the compilation of which was commissioned by Siemens and developed in cooperation with leading urban experts around the world, the press release said.


Cities performing well in the index have abilities to successfully implement environmental projects and consistently enforce regulations, Jan Friederich, research head of the study, said in the statement.


"Higher income doesn't necessarily mean higher resource consumption", the study noted.


When income exceeds an annual gross domestic product of some 15,000 euros (US$20,217) per capita, resource consumption drops again, it added.


The study also found that environmental awareness is growing in Asia, and most of the cities have already introduced comprehensive environmental guidelines.


However, air pollution levels are relatively high in all the cities, regardless of income, it concluded, adding that the average values for all the cities substantially exceed WHO standards.


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