At CleanStart, we like to watch city rankings on green and sustainability to see where our region sits.  ACEEE’s City Scorecard is a notable one. This year, Sacramento improved, moving from 20th to 17th out of the 100 Largest Cities in the US. Every year the American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy puts out its City Clean Energy Scorecard. The Scorecard compares efforts by US cities to make buildings and transportation more energy efficient and increase the utilization of renewable energy.

While we have a leading utility in SMUD, and the City of Sacramento has continually supported sustainability, we must take continual actions to fight climate change and support sustainability. Sacramento improved its score in Transit, Community Activity, and Utility/Energy. This corresponds to the activity you might see just living around Sacramento, from more bike lanes to shared mobility, fast charges, and SMUDs Sustainable Communities initiative.  

While scoring better than most, Sacramento lost points on building standards, specifically enforcement. It is essential to address this because emissions from buildings are a significant portion of greenhouse gas emissions.  Also, building emissions impact underserved communities who live in and around older buildings more. There is a push to electrify buildings and replace and update older buildings to make them more efficient. For example, SMUD and Sacramento Metro Air Quality Management District support consumer and commercial replacement of old dirty equipment (like stoves and lawnmowers). 

If you want to see the rankings, you can check them out here.


Thomas is the Executive Director of CleanStart. Thomas has a strong background in supporting small businesses, leadership, financial management and is proficient in working with nonprofits. He has a BS in Finance and a BA in Economics from California State University, Chico. Thomas has a passion for sustainability and a commitment to supporting non-profits in the region.

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