Stories tagged cleanest

Apr
30
2007

We're #5!  Minneapolis-St.Paul is ranked as the fifth cleanest city in the world: Photo by kevinthoule at flickr.com
We're #5! Minneapolis-St.Paul is ranked as the fifth cleanest city in the world: Photo by kevinthoule at flickr.com

Forbes magazine has an article on the world’s 25 cleanest cities. Minneapolis comes it at #5.

The list comes from studies conducted by the Mercer Human Resources Consulting which rate quality of living in various cities. They looked at things like producing sufficient energy cleanly, handling waste responsibly, encouraging recycling, and efficient transportation.
According to the article:

It is interesting to note that size does not appear to be a factor either in terms of size of population or physical size of the city. The most common trait in common to each is a focus on high tech, education and headquartering of national and international companies along with an extensive public transit system.

The ecotality blog notices something interesting – all of the top 25 are in industrialized democracies. Normally, we think of industry as being very dirty. But writer Bill Hobbs suggests that

“…industrialization created wealth which, in turn, buys the things (mass transit, especially) and pays for the policies that create a cleaner environment.”

I would add that, in democracies, citizens can pressure government and business to pass laws protecting the environment. The actions necessary to make a clean city require money and political will. Clearly, capitalism is good for the environment!