The American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE) has released the 2013 City Energy Efficiency Scorecard, a report that ranks 34 of the most populous U.S. cities on policies to advance energy efficiency.
Cities are evaluated on what actions they are taking to reduce energy use in five key areas: buildings; transportation; energy and water utility efforts; local government operations; and community-wide initiatives.
According to the report, Boston took top honors, doing the most to save energy. Other top-scoring cities include Portland, Ore., New York City, San Francisco, Seattle and Austin. The report says the next tier of top-scoring cities (Washington, D.C., Minneapolis, Chicago, Philadelphia and Denver) have also developed efficiency initiatives and are poised to rise in the rankings in future years.
Although Boston achieved the highest score overall, the report says other cities led in some policy areas. Portland scored highest in transportation and local government operations. Seattle ranked first in building policies. San Francisco tied with Boston for first in utility public benefits programs, and Austin is the city furthest ahead of its state on energy efficiency policy.
Other key findings include the following:
– Local leadership and commitment to energy efficiency is strong. With great influence over energy use in their communities, city leaders can implement initiatives that provide benefits where they are most tangible to citizens and businesses, directly improving the community.
– All cities, even the highest scorers, have significant room for improvement, the report says. Boston, the highest-scoring city, missed nearly a quarter of possible points. Only 11 cities scored more than half of the possible points.
To read the report and view an infographic, click here.