Pasadena is Third Greenest Mid-Size City in U.S., Study Shows

Published : Thursday, May 15, 2014 | 4:17 AM

Pasadena City ranked third among the country’s “10 Greenest Mid-Size Cities” in a study conducted by MyLife.com, a social networking website with more than 60 million registered users.

“[One of Pasadena's] nickname is ‘the City of Trees,’ so it makes perfect sense that it comes in at number three on this list,” MyLife said. “Pasadena is among the nation’s leading cities transforming into a clean and green community.”

The study was released last week on the website through an article written by Christian Neeser.

MyLife ranked 189 mid-size cities based on four categories: the number of public parks and numbers of recycling centers in the area, both based on Yelp; environmental consciousness of the commuters to lessen carbon footprint, according to the data from the city’s Census page; and the “walk score” or distance of establishments from one another, based on http://www.walkscore.com.

Pasadena ranked 19th in the number of its public parks and 21st on the number of recycling centers. The city placed 24th on the “Environmentally Conscious Commuters” category, which considers whether the city’s more than 130,000 population carpool, take public transportation or walk to go to their jobs, or if they work from home. The mode of transportation is considered in determining the city’s carbon footprint, the study said.

The city reached 15th place on the walk score, meaning that establishments are of walking distance to one another, “enabling lesser use of gas and promoting clean air.”

Alexandria, Virginia topped the list after it placed in the the top 20 in all four categories. Hayward, California came second after it ranked number one in the number of centers category.

The other greenest mid-size cities in the list are Richmond, Virginia; Fort Lauderdale, Florida; Ann Arbor, Michigan; Berkeley, California; Cambridge, Massachusetts; Boulder, Colorado; and Tacoma, Washington, which ranked 4th to 10th place , respectively.

Port St. Lucie, Florida, meanwhile, sank at the bottom of the list, placing 189th.

“Finding and recognizing sustainable communities is important in order to create awareness,” said MyLife community outreach coordinator Julissa Arangure. “The city you live in is your daily environment, where you grow as a community and where you can participate in family activities. It’s important to keep it safe, clean, and well structured.”

Mylife said the study was conducted to “further the effort to learn more about how people act in regards to green-friendly activity.”

“Big cities are often under the microscope regarding their green practices, so it was interesting for us to get a feel how mid-sized cities performed,” said Christian Neeser, author of the article. “It’s great to see how many environmentally conscious commuters there really are, which is reflective of green efforts on a more individual level.”

The website said that in order for Pasadena to improve its rankings, the city must work together by supporting local farmers markets, starting a food co-op or a community garden, weekly recycling and carpooling to work and school.

MyLife also suggested the residents to obtain water conservation kits which are now being provided by the Pasadena Water and Power (PWP) department. The kits consist of different types of shower head, faucet aerators, soil moisture probes and leak detection tablets.

PWP Water conversation Manager Nancy Long also gave a tip to save water, while also earning rebates from the city.

“The number one tip is reconsider your landscaping,” Long said. “Remove some or all of your turf and replace it with California-friendly and native plants.”

PWP Customer Relations Manager Wendy De Leon said PWP also offers a variety of things that help the residents and business-owners to be green.

“One great thing that we do is give residents and businesses an opportunity to purchase 100 percent green power if they so desire, and that’s through our website,” De Leon said. “It’s costs little bit more but it guarantees that we’re providing them with 100 percent green green power.”

She added that there is also a variety of rebate programs and services to help people reduce their consumption of energy and water.

“We give rebates for things like toilets and water-saving urinals, refrigerators,” De Leon said. “We most likely have a rebate available for anything that you can think of that would save energy or water.”

MyLife is a website founded by Jeff Tinsley in 2002. Visit http://www.mylife.com/blog/the-10-greenest-mid-size-cities for more information.