Southern California environment news and trends

San Francisco tops list of US cities with most eco-friendly services

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Daniel Romero plants flats of plants on the living roof of the new California Academy of Sciences building in Golden Gate Park in San Francisco, California.

San Francisco has long been a pioneer in urban environmentalism, including being the first American city to ban single-use plastic bags. A new survey finds that the city by the Bay is the country’s most environmentally friendly location — literally.

As reported by Treehugger, website rated America’s largest cities in terms of the “highest per-capita prevalence of eco-friendly services,” ranging from green architects to housecleaners who only use biodegradable, non-chemical cleaning agents. When the dust cleared, the top three spots were all in the Bay area: San Francisco, Oakland, and San Jose.

“These rankings match up well with other city rankings for sustainability. Nine of the top ten cities on our list are also cited by the National Resources Defense Council as examples of smarter cities,” said the report, which is not without a sense of humor.


Nissan turns over a new Leaf with eco-friendly car carrier

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The Nissan Leaf electric is seen charging during the press day of the LA Auto Show in Los Angeles, California.

With the rollout of their car the Leaf, Japanese automaker Nissan has charged confidently into the burgeoning new world of electric vehicles (it’s an initiative the company first explored with the Altra back in 1997). Now they’ve furthered their commitment to eco-responsibility by employing energy-efficient car carriers to bring the Leaf to America.

“As Nissan went to the effort to launch the Nissan Leaf at that time, in terms of the logistical flow, we thought there would be a way for us to contribute using state-of-the-art technologies,” said Tomohiko Uchiyama, president of Nitto Kaiun Corporation, the company that produces the boat.

The Nichioh Maru is a solar-powered car carrier with a special low-friction hull for more efficient movement through the water. About the size of a football field and a half, the carrier can haul up to 1380 cars at a time. Featuring LED lighting and an electronically controlled diesel engine, Nissan claims that the Nichioh Maru reduces carbon emissions by about 18 percent, saving 1400 tons of fuel a year.