Discussing America’s cleanest and dirtiest cities is entirely normal within the country. Each American regards the city he/she lives in as being the cleanest city in America. However, which city is really the cleanest?
Reader’s Digest recently compared data received on 50 most populous metropolitan areas so as to rank America’s cleanest cities. Before, discussing the cleanest city in America, it may be important to clarify on just what is meant by a clean city. A clean city is essentially a place which has a good quality of air, safe water for consumption and where factories and industries are environmentally-friendly and do not emit chemical waste into the environment.
The city is typically free of litter and it will be possible for residents to take a stroll without having to face garbage. The data that was used to determine the cleanest city included not just information on the city itself but also on the neighboring suburbs and counties.
After studying the data that it had obtained, Reader’s Digest concluded that Portland, Oregon was the cleanest city in America. For a long time, Portland has been a vital port and shipbuilding centre which is now also seeing a growing high-tech sector. Portland also has a strong base in the manufacturing of metal items, paper and sports gear.
Despite this, it was noted that Portland also faced a situation where the per capita income was below the average amount for the 50 cities that were analysed in the study.
In 2000, about a nine mile stretch of Willamette River’s Portland Harbor was announced as being a Superfund site. This was because the sewer system was archaic and had a poor design where sewage water and storm water were combined in one piping system. Even the industries in the counties in Portland released huge amounts of toxins into the environment, thereby polluting the water bodies, land and air.
Despite these major environmental issues, Portland was able to find solutions and create a livable environment for its residents. Portland is the only city in America which has an elected regional government. This means that any planning or growth decisions are made in collaboration with its neighbors. This set-up has benefited Portland in that it has enabled the city to make large-scale decisions like the setting up of a growth boundary centered around the urban centre. These collaborative moves have also contributed to a burgeoning agricultural scene situated just outside of the city.
Portland also now has a large urban area which has an extensive and effective public transportation system. In order to make the use of public transportation popular among its residents, Portland has converted a part of bus and light rail system into a fare-free zone. In order to solve the problem of pollution caused by sewage leaks, the city has generously invested in more than a billion dollars in a project called the Big Pipe Project.” This is where pipes will be laid along Willamette with the purpose of carrying waste directly to treatment plants rather than into the environment.
Having effectively rectified the problems it had, Portland is now a sparkling clean city known for being environmentally friendly. Definitely a thing or two can be learned from this city!
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