New York City again ranked number as the most carbon-friendly city in the United States, according to a ranking of metro areas.
Streetlight Data, a mobile analytics company, produces the U.S. Transportation Climate Impact Index. The index reviews the country’s top 100 metro areas to assess each on how carbon-friendly they are.
The index looks at transit usage, vehicle miles traveled, biking, walking, how direct car trips are to destinations, and population density. The data is from several different sources, including smartphones, car sensors and other ways people travel.
New York City topped the rankings for the second year in a row. Last year, NYC was first because of its high rankings for biking, mass transit and pedestrian miles traveled.
However, in 2020, NYC ranked first because people were driving cars less, which helped gain a favorable score. Biking and pedestrian miles traveled actually fell, while mass transit scores were high again.
Other top metro areas included Northport-Sarasota-Bradenton, Fla., Portland, Cape Coral-Ft. Meyers, Fla., and San Francisco-Oakland.
There were some other interesting observations about transportation during the pandemic. Biking and walking increased in many metro areas in 2020, but there was a drop in biking in some major cities, particularly ones known for having strong biking communities. The researchers attributed the decline to work-from-home policies.
Also, work-from-home policies did not translate to a permanent dropoff in driving. By August, driving was climbing again, but peak driving times had changed.
Commuting in some cities is more straightforward than in others. But commuter benefits can help you save money while you are doing it. Commuter benefits let you save up to $270 per month in your paychecks tax-free to use for mass transit, qualified parking or rideshare costs. And if you don’t want to use those methods, your employer can set you up with a prepaid account to take micromobility vehicles like e-scooters and e-bikes.
If you want more information, schedule a 15 minute call with a member of our team.