To environmentalists, cities hardly appear to be bastions of green living. In fact, metropolises can seem like little more than concrete jungles where no grass grows and miniature living spaces are thoughtlessly stacked on top of each other without regard for the natural world.
After all, in general, cities are dirty. They rely less on nature than money, and by their very design, they snub the natural system of things. Right?
Well, maybe not so much. It turns out city living may be just the antidote needed for environmental irresponsibility. By their nature, cities significantly reduce the carbon footprint left behind by the people who live in them, whether people are consciously trying to make that change or not. And that’s a win-win for the environment. Here’s why.
No one drives a car
People walk in cities (OK, maybe not all cities). Most neighborhoods have their own grocers, delis, series of shops, restaurants, dry cleaners, music venues, and public transit stations. And that means a whole lot of people who have no use for personal vehicles. Annual transportation expenses for most Americans comprise around 17 percent of their incomes. Not so in cities, where transit passes like Metro Cards and BART tickets only add up to around 9 percent.