With 75.6 points out of a possible 100, San Francisco topped WalletHub’s listing of green cities in the US. It was followed closely by Honolulu, HI, which achieved 74.5 points out of the total 100 available. WalletHub used a host of metrics to decide which cities were the most 'green.' For instance, San Francisco topped its rankings in its lifestyle and policy rankings and Honolulu topped the rankings in the environment category.
WalletHub, a financial services company, today (Oct. 12) unveiled the rankings. In making the rankings it used data from sources including the Census Bureau, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Energy Information Administration and more in its ranking of the greenest cities in the US. The ranking evaluated cities for their use of renewable energy, the amount of solar per capita, their greenhouse gas emissions per capita, and a number of other factors.
“To determine the cities promoting an environmentally friendly lifestyle, WalletHub’s analysts compared the 100 largest cities across 20 key ‘green’ indicators. Our data set ranges from ‘greenhouse-gas emissions per capita’ to ‘number of smart-energy policies and initiatives,” wrote WalletHub’s Finance Writer Richie Bernardo.
“Tree hugger or not, all humans have a responsibility to protect the planet. Fortunately, 74 percent of Americans agree with that statement today. The rest still worry that ‘going green’ would cost the economy some serious green and result in major employment cuts,” Bernardo said.
However, Bernardo observed: “On the contrary, ‘more jobs are created for each unit of electricity generated from renewable sources than from fossil fuels,’ according to the Union of Concerned Scientists. Moreover, the UCS points out that fossil-fuel technologies tend to be capital-intensive, whereas the renewable-energy industry is more labor-intensive.” “He added, “In 2015, for instance, the Solar Foundation reported that the solar industry created jobs nearly 20 times faster than the national rate.”
WalletHub said that in addition to green energy’s ability to employ more Americans, other policies and programs are also proving beneficial. It cited recycling programs and urban agriculture as examples. “Recognizing those advantages, cities across the U.S. have aligned their sustainability efforts with their economic goals and in turn have received handsome returns on such investments,” Bernardo said.Tweet