PORTLAND, Ore. — The West Coast came in big with Clean Edge’s first annual U.S. Metro Clean Tech Index, which provides the industry’s most comprehensive and objective analysis of how the 50 largest U.S. metro regions compare across the clean-tech spectrum.
The Metro Index assesses clean tech leadership in metro areas across four categories: green buildings; advanced transportation; clean electricity and carbon management; and clean tech investment, innovation and workforce.
Six out of 10 of the clean tech regions making the list came from the West Coast. San Jose, Calif., was ranked number one for its use of sustainable practices including using hybrid electric vehicles, certified green buildings and clean tech venture capital investments.
“West Coast metro regions, which have been at the forefront of the regional clean tech efforts and have strong state supports, dominate the inaugural U.S. Metro Clean Tech Index,” said Ron Pernick, Clean Edge’s managing director, in a statement. “But other regions show significant strengths and assets, from Chicago and Washington D.C., to Austin and Salt Lake City, representing the diversity of clean tech leadership and activities across the nation.”
Top 10 “Clean Tech” Regions
1. San Jose
2. San Francisco
7. Los Angeles
8. Washington D.C.
Part of the reason behind the big numbers coming out of the West Coast has to be California’s push to improve energy efficiency standards on new and existing public buildings. This year, Gov. Jerry Brown ordered state agencies to cut carbon emissions and implement strict new building measures.
Along with California boosting its standards, others along the West Coast are contributing to the green building boom. In Portland, Ore., Clean Edge’s research concluded that the city has more LEED-certified green building projects per capita than any other metro region.
The study also found that the top metro regions with the largest share of electric vehicles on the road are all in California and include San Francisco, San Jose, Los Angeles, Riverside, Sacramento and San Diego.
Although some cities did not appear on the list, they still impressed those at Clean Edge, including Raleigh, N.C. Clean Edge found that Raleigh has the lowest carbon emissions (metric tons per capita) from large facilities. Also not on the list was Salt Lake City, who leads the nation, along with Boston and San Jose, with the most licensable clean technologies coming out of their university labs, per capita.