Happy Planet Index measures the wellbeing of a country’s inhabitants and how these nations accomplish long sustainable and happy lives. This year, Mexico is second place in this ranking, which will probably change our perspective about our country in some way.
Even though Mexico’s economy is almost five times smaller than the United States economy, we place much higher on the list than they do, but, what are the factors that the Index analyses to qualify a country as Happy?
They analyze 140 nations, evaluating factors such as wellbeing, life expectancy, income inequality and the ecological footprint that every country leaves behind in the planet. This analysis is developed by the World Economic Forum and is the result of a mathematical equation of those four variables.
What they mean by wellbeing in this analysis is how satisfied residents are in a scale of 0 to 10, speaking in general about their country. Life expectancy changes according to the nation, an average of years lived is made for everyone. Regarding income inequality, it is questioned how happy one can be based in the distribution of the life expectancy and the wellbeing data.
The ecological footprint is the impact that every resident leaves in the environment; this variable is what made countries like Switzerland, the United States and the United Kingdom place in positions like number 24, 108 and 34 respectively; their ecological footprint was much higher than others.
“They are an example that it is possible to lead a good life without it taking a toll on the Earth. The future shouldn’t be North America or Occidental Europe, it should be Latin America” points out Nic Marks, the Index creator.
The Universal Health Insurance implemented in 2012 that provides the population with the essential health services free of charge; the tax on soda and sugary drinks to battle obesity applied in 2014 and the long term plans concerning climate change as well as conserving our rich biodiversity; these are some of the factors that help place Mexico as number two in the list.
Costa Rica takes place number one in the list, followed by Mexico, with Colombia as a third place; this shows the great potential Latin America has to keep heading the ranking. It is clear that there is still a lot to be changed, but this type of lists demonstrate that we are close to making positive changes for our country.