How Green is Your City?

green cities

A new infographic details municipal efforts to make cities more environmentally friendly.

With the definition of “green” still fuzzy when it comes to products, it’s even more difficult to measure the efforts of cities attempting to decrease their carbon footprint. What are water consumption policies like? How many cars on the road? What types of recycling programs and waste reduction efforts are underway? Are there any green building or alternative energy incentives?

HouseTrip set out to find out and measure the efforts of the world’s top “green” cities. Motivation for the project came from wanting to help draw attention to the importance of cutting global pollution generated by cities. With more than half of the world’s population now living in urban areas, cities are beginning to become leaders in environmentally responsible living. Data collected from the Siemens Green Cities Index and other sources provided the information to develop the infographic.

The inforgraphic shows which of these most progressive cities are doing what in the world of green: London, New York, Vancouver, Copenhagen, Amsterdam, and Stockholm. So what are these cities up to? Just 44 percent of New Yorkers own a car, for example. Compared with 95 percent of the rest of Americans, that’s a pretty huge difference. Head over to Amsterdam and you’ll see more bikes than people—one bike for every 0.73 people in fact. Copenhagen is among the cities embracing the benefits of green roofs, with legislation requiring green rooftops on all new buildings, which will add 5,000 square meters of vegetation. Vancouver and Copenhagen recycle 55 percent of all their waste. Vancouver generates 90 percent of its energy from renewable resources; Stockholm is at 60 percent.

green cities

Keep in touch with Jill on Twitter @jillettinger

Images: HouseTrip

Jill Ettinger

Jill Ettinger is the senior editor and featured columnist on EcoSalon and sister site Organic Authority. Jill’s writing has been featured in The Village Voice, MTV, Reality Sandwich and Global Rhythm as well as the anthologies “Towards 2012: Perspectives on the Next Age” (2009, Tarcher/Penguin) and “What Do You Believe?” (2009, Outside the Box). A focus on food policy, veganism, wellness, music and world cultural expressions, Jill blends the mystical and modern as she explores what our shifting food, fashion, culture and creative landscapes will look, sound and taste like in the future. Jill spent more than a decade as a sales and marketing manager in the natural foods industry and regularly consults with and supports emerging brands and organizations in creative communication, social media and event production. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband and future foodie, their daughter Imogene. Twitter @jillettinger |