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America's 10 Best (And 10 Worst) Cities For Green Cars

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Going Green

Going Green

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Talking the "green" talk is easy: toss out enough words like "recyclable" and "zero-emissions" and "carbon footprint", and even the crustiest oil baron can come out looking like Al Gore. Getting folks to walk the "green" walk, however, is a different matter altogether--as a new report from Nielsen reveals.

America's favorite poll-dancers looked at ownership rates of high-mileage vehicles like the Honda Fit and the Toyota Prius in markets across the U.S. The company then took those ownership stats and weighed them against auto registrations so they could determine the percentage of green vehicles in each locale.

No prizes for guessing which city sits at the top of the list: according to Nielsen, folks in San Francisco are most likely to own green vehicles. Rounding out the top-ten list are Washington, D.C., New York City, Boston, San Diego, Chicago, Monterey-Salinas, CA, Honolulu, Los Angeles, and Baltimore.

At the bottom of the scale, we find slightly more rural communities--the residents of which often depend on gas-guzzling farm vehicles for their livelihood. Folks in the ironically named towns of Greenwood and Greenville, MS are least likely Americans to buy green vehicles. They're followed in short order by fellow Mississippians in Meridian; then by the residents of Bluefield WV; Presque Isle, ME, Columbus, MS; Hattiesburg-Laurel, MS; Clarksburg-Weston, WV, Tri-Cities, TN-VA; Charleston;, WV; and Glendive, MT.

If your city didn't make the cut, don't worry too much: no matter where you live, and no matter what you drive, you can always make your life a little greener--and save a little green, too. Just click the image above to see Marty Padgett's handy-dandy list of tips for drivers like you.

[Nielsen]

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Comments (2)
  1. Richard - this stuff is no surprise. In 1980 when i was traveling the country on business, I saw that the two coastal city groups (Maine to Florida and Seattle to San Diego) had lots of imported cars around. Everywhere in flyover country (liberal put down description)there were only Chevy, Ford and Plymouth and other "real cars" and pickups. Nothing new here.
     
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  2. True, there's not much new here--although I think it's still really interesting to pick apart the data and consider why those areas in the center of the country tend to be as "green-resistant" as they are.
    .
    Since I hail from one of the towns that made the "bottom ten" list, I know from experience that even today, there's a lot of xenophobia at work--fear of foreign influence and such. There's also a fear of repairs: to this day, my father doesn't understand why people buy Toyotas because he thinks no one knows how to fix 'em. And my father's a pretty smart guy--a professional and all. He should probably know better.
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    On the other hand, why have the coastal areas gone greener faster than everyone else? Higher fuel prices? Less need for heavy vehicles? Greater need for smaller vehicles? An all-consuming need for status symbols?
    .
    No, there aren't really any surprises, but it's always nice to see statistical proof that verifies what you've always guessed or assumed.
     
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