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Most Environmentally-Friendly Cities to Move to

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A survey conducted by the Pew Research Center in 2016 found that while overall, most Americans support protecting the environment, there are deep partisan divides. Nearly three-quarters of adults in the U.S. stated they believe the country should do whatever it takes to protect the environment, while the remainder noted that America has “gone too far” in its effort to protect the environment.

If you’re one of the majority of Americans who are concerned and want to live in a city that supports your belief in being more environmentally-friendly, consider one of these destinations. These cities boast lots of “green” indicators, from smart-energy policies and initiatives to lower greenhouse emissions per capita.

San Francisco, California

The City by the Bay is not only one of the most beautiful in the country, it’s one of the most environmentally conscious. It’s home to over 200 organic grocery stores, second only to New York City, is very walkable and bikeable, in addition to offering a range of public transportation options. It’s also working on the Urban Forestation project which aims to use rooftops as “living roofs,” growing gardens utilizing rainwater instead of leaving empty, unused space. Its Green Connections project will link park space with two-dozen pathways for a total of 115 miles of streets that can be utilized for emission-free transport.

Phoenix, Arizona

It wasn’t long ago that Phoenix was considered one of the least sustainable cities in the nation, but things are changing quickly. If you buy one of the houses for sale in Phoenix, AZ, you’ll be able to take advantage of its outstanding, extensive network of public transportation 24/7, thanks to the city’s efforts to reduce air pollution and congested roadways. Urban farms are taking over once vacant, abandoned land, supplying some of Phoenix’s farmers’ markets.

Honolulu, Hawaii

If the tropics are calling, consider Hawaii’s capital. The Daily Beast reports that over 66% of residents in Honolulu are very eco-conscious, with a large majority, nearly 72% stating they recycle, and many utilizing public transportation rather than getting behind the wheel. Of course, they have a big motivating factor: preserving all those beautiful beaches, brilliant clear blue waters and lush vegetation.

Portland, Oregon

Portlanders love their green – not only the abundance of lush greenery that abounds, including urban forests that are right in the middle of the city, but they’re some of the most eco-conscious residents in the country. Travel + Leisure readers ranked it as the No. 1 greenest city in 2015, thanks to its mass-transit options and numerous eateries that source ingredients locally. Those who live here also take advantage of the fun of recycling, frequently buying at the many treasure-filled vintage shops and flea markets. As Portlanders are famous for their love of all things fresh and local, there are more than 40 farmers’ markets here offering locally-produced produce, free-range meats, eggs, raw honey and more.

New York City, New York

New York City is not like it used to be either, in fact, it’s among the most environmentally-friendly cities today. It’s walkable, there are lots of green spaces and parks, and it hosts the highest number of organic grocery stores and farmers’ markets than any other city in the nation. You’ll find lots of electric-vehicle charging stations – nearly 700 are within a 30-mile radius, and thanks to state level initiatives, the city is on pace to achieve a 35 percent reduction in greenhouse emissions by 2025, 80 percent by 2050.


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