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10 U.S. cities with the best clean tech markets

Posting in Cities

Currently, the clean tech market in the United States is dominated by West Coast cities.

That's the consensus from a new report out today from Clean Edge, a research and advisory firm devoted to the clean tech industry. The company's first annual U.S. Metro Clean Tech Index has six West Coast cities in its top 10 ranking of the 50 largest U.S. cities with the best clean tech market.

Here they are:

  1. San Jose, Calif.
  2. San Francisco, Calif.
  3. Portland, Ore.
  4. Sacramento, Calif.
  5. Seattle, Wash.
  6. Denver, Colo.
  7. Los Angeles, Calif.
  8. Washington, D.C.
  9. Boston, Mass.
  10. Austin, Texas

Clean Edge ranks the performance of each metro's clean tech industry using four equally-weighted categories: green buildings; advanced transportation; clean electricity & carbon management; clean-tech investment, innovation, & workforce. Within those categories a number of indicators were measured, including green building deployment, clean vehicles in use, advanced transportation infrastructure, public transportation ridership, regional electricity mix, GHG emissions, venture capital investment, clean energy patents, and clean economy jobs, among others. From the report:

At first, clean tech may evoke some very non-urban imagery – wind farms dotting the Great Plains, solar projects scattered in remote Southwest deserts, or biofuel refineries near farms in the Heartland. But in reality it is the demand from major population centers that drives this activity, as wind keeps the lights on in Denver, the sun powers air conditioners across Los Angeles, and ethanol and advanced biodiesel fuel vehicles in Minneapolis.

Here are some other interesting facts from the report:

  • 87 percent of all U.S. clean-tech venture capital dollars from 2009 through 2011 went to companies headquartered in the top 50 metro areas.
  • Top 50 metros account for 72 percent of LEED-certified square footage, more than 70 percent of U.S. company clean energy patents, and more than 95 percent of the country’s registered HEVs.
  • The Portland and Seattle metro areas rank first and second for the number of non-residential EV charging stations per capita.

Read more about the report here.

— By on October 23, 2012, 3:56 AM PST

Tyler Falk

Contributing Editor

Tyler Falk freelance journalist based in Washington, D.C. Previously, he was with Smart Growth America and Grist. He holds a degree from Goshen College. Follow him on Twitter. Disclosure