A new study proclaims Sweden to be the world’s most sustainable country. Yes, the land that gave birth to IKEA has beaten out everyone other country on the planet–and Norway is a close second. The investment company RobecoSAM evaluated 60 countries on a broad range of environmental, social and governance factors. Read on to learn more.

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Even though Sweden did not score particularly high in regards to renewable energy or overall energy use (it ranked third in renewable power capacity per capita), it did rate well in support of liberty and equality, investment in education and the ability to respond to environmental threats. A senior researcher at Robeco Quantitative Strategies, Johan Duvyesteyn, commented: “Our statistical analysis helps us identify which sustainability criteria are financially more relevant, which in turn helps us make better-informed investment decisions.”

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Switzerland rounded out the top three; other countries in the top 10 include Great Britain, New Zealand, Ireland, Germany, Denmark, Australia, and Austria. The least sustainable countries are, China (not a shock), Thailand, Nigeria, Egypt and Venezuela.

It appears most of the “sustainability” ratings have more to do with risk management, such as the level of urban planning and ability to respond to environmental crises. It would be great, though, if we could encourage people to invest in those countries which are truly self-sustaining. If there are any left.

Via Clean Technica

Images via Flickr/ Hakan Dahlstrom and Dennis Jarvis