“Green” living means a choice to engage in cleaner, more sustainable habits in order to preserve the planet as much as possible. Nearly two-thirds of Americans believe that “stricter environmental regulations are worth the cost.” And a majority of Americans think the government is currently doing too little to improve water and air quality (69% and 64%, respectively).

Apart from employing Americans, clean energy and other “green” practices, such as recycling programs and urban agriculture, benefit the environment and public health, all of which contribute to America’s bottom line, according to many experts. Recognizing those advantages, cities across the U.S. have increased their sustainability efforts and benefited economically.

To determine the cities promoting an environmentally friendly lifestyle, WalletHub compared the 100 largest cities across 28 key “green” indicators.

Greenest Cities in AmericaLeast Green Cities in America
1. San Francisco, CA91. Virginia Beach, VA
2. San Diego, CA92. Jacksonville, FL
3. Irvine, CA93. Detroit, MI
4. Washington, DC94. Cleveland, OH
5. San Jose, CA95. Gilbert, AZ
6. Seattle, WA96. Mesa, AZ
7. Fremont, CA97. Lexington-Fayette, KY
8. Sacramento, CA98. Toledo, OH
9. Portland, OR99. Corpus Christi, TX
10. Oakland, CA100. Baton Rouge, LA

Best vs. Worst

  • Lubbock, Texas, has the lowest median air-quality index, 25, which is 3.9 times lower than in Riverside and San Bernardino, California, the cities with the highest at 97 (Lowest index = Best).
  • Anchorage, has the most green space, 84.17 percent, which is 55.4 times more than in Hialeah, Florida, the city with the least at 1.52 percent.
  • New York has the highest walk score, 89, which is four times higher than in Chesapeake, Virginia, the city with the lowest at 22.
  • Honolulu has the most farmers markets (per square root of population), 0.1182, which is 62.2 times more than in Newark, New Jersey, the city with the fewest at 0.0019.
For more information, visit https://wallethub.com/edu/most-least-green-cities/16246/.