As Earth Day approaches (on April 22), financial website WalletHub has once again released a timely report.
In their "2021's Greenest States" rankings, the site looked at all 50 states to uncover which ones are the most environmentally friendly.
"On top of dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, the U.S. also had a record number of natural disasters that did at least a billion dollars in damage, at 22. While some disasters are unavoidable, others are exacerbated by humans. For example, one big factor in the high amount of hurricanes in the past year was unusually warm Atlantic waters. It’s possible that living more sustainably and using greener energy sources could prevent us from having quite as bad hurricane seasons in the future — and saving a lot of money in repairs as a result," says WalletHub. "We should all try to do our part to save the world for future generations."
The site compared each state across 25 metrics in the categories "Environmental Quality," "Eco-Friendly Behaviors" and "Climate-Change Contributions." Those included data on water and air quality, green buildings per capita, green transportation, organic farms per capita, CO2 emissions per capita and share of renewable energy consumption (among others).
Turns out Kentucky isn't all that green.
The Bluegrass state came in at No. 46 out of 50 — as in very close to the worst. West Virginia was the least green state in America at No. 50. And Vermont was the most green at No. 1.
Ohio fell in the middle of the pack at No. 31, but had one of the lowest air quality numbers (tying for No. 46 with Indiana) and the lowest percentage of renewable energy consumption (No. 46). Still, all of those metrics combined had Ohio beating Kentucky in green-ness.
See the full results, specific metrics and methodology at wallethub.com.