India, China and the (bedraggled) state of their environments.

Whenever China’s environment is discussed, the narrative that crops up is that its authoritarian government has steamrolled environmental concerns while chasing growth. And so, fittingly, when Jianguo Liu and Jared Diamond rate 15 of the world’s most populous countries on environmental sustainability, China is the second worst with a score of 129 (on a 142 point scale). But, curiously, India stands at No. 4 with 116 points.

How did democratic India get into this mess?

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