Healthiest Cities in the United States

6 Best Cities Working Towards Sustainability Sets An Example For The Rest Of The World

As the world’s population grows, up to 68% of people are expected to live in cities by 2050, requiring 80% of global resources and generating ever-increasing carbon emissions. In order to combat these issues, we need to make societal changes on a nearly unimaginable scale.

Some cities have already undertaken huge steps toward creating a greener future. In this post, we’ll look into five key topics to mitigate the carbon impact. We’ll also discuss some of the cities making the largest changes with each of these topics.

Sustainable Public Transport

As our population grows, cities must adapt and transform their transport systems by creating access to affordable and sustainable public transport options. Gothenburg, Sweden, is a great example of a city dedicated to improving its public transport and creating a wave of green options. 65% of the city’s transport options use energy from renewable sources.

With over 250 miles of bike paths, 25 city workers commute by bike. 8% of Portland, Oregon’s population use cycling as their main transport method. Amsterdam and Copenhagen are notoriously known for their sustainable transport options. People are increasingly opting for cycling or commuter scooters for adults as their main travel choice worldwide.

Green Spaces

With high amounts of pollutants being generated daily in city centres, we need to find ways to improve our air quality. Green spaces provide a habitat for wildlife leading to more biodiversity within the city as well as creating therapeutic spaces for the community and improving mental health.

Vienna, Austria, ensures its residents’ right to high-quality green and open spaces. Fifty per cent of the city is dedicated to this belief. Their green space is spread across 2000 parks.

Energy Distribution

The scale and rate of energy consumption are a major challenge for both existing and developing cities. But, luckily many locations around the globe are adopting and developing new inventive ways to create their energy supply.

In Denmark, the city of Copenhagen is leading the way. Using its energy supply in smart and sustainable ways and it’s home to the world’s largest and most successful district heating system. The system works by capturing the excess heat from electricity production, distributed through a network of pipes delivering the heat to 90 households within Copenhagen.

Sustainable Food Production

By the year 2050, the world will require to produce twice as much food whilst reducing greenhouse gas emissions by two-thirds compared to today’s emission rates. Cities must find new ways to feed their citizens, focusing on local sustainably grown food.

Helsinki, Finland, has a rich heritage of urban farming, with allotments dotted across the city.

More recently, there’s been a push for more carbon-neutral urban farming, with residents growing crops on rooftops or even in so-called sac gardens creating small farming spaces with old industrial sacks.

Waste Management

Every day, the world produces more than 3.5 million tons of plastic and other waste, directly impacting people’s health and the environment. To ensure the health of our planet, we need to invest and adopt appropriate waste management technologies.

The city of San Francisco in the U.S has introduced bold public policy and educational initiatives allowing them to divert 1.6 million tons of waste from landfills, recycling an incredible 77% of their waste stream. It was also the first city in the U.S to introduce a ban on single-use plastic bags. Since then, a lot of other cities and countries have taken on this ban as a starting point to making a huge difference to the earth’s pollution.


These cities continue to set a global example as growing numbers of governments and people by adopting greener and more sustainable policies. We must learn from them and truly begin to reduce the harmful impacts we cause on the planet. We shall efficiently use our resources and create a better world.

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