Monday, July 02, 2018

The Greenest Cities in the World

Prague is the greenest city in the world. Over 50% of Prague is given over to 'green' spaces. In comparison Tokyo is not very green. Less than 6% of the city is dedicated to parks or gardens.

Travelbird has ranked 50 world cities based on their 'greeness'. You can view their results in The Greenest Cities in the World. To rank the cities Travelbird used OpenStreetMaps to analyze the amount of space in each city taken up by parks, gardens, forests, nature reserves and farms. They have released their results in two main formats; the amount of green space per person and the percentage of green space in each city.

Reykjavík, Auckland and Bratislava (receptively) top the list for the cities with the most green spaces per person. Prague, Madrid and Vienna top the list if you view the percentage of the city given over to green spaces. Tokyo comes bottom of both lists. It has the least green space per person and by percentage area of the city.

It is interesting to compare Travelbirds results with the results of MIT Sensable City Lab's Treepedia. MIT Sensable City Lab has used Google Maps Street View images to assess the amount of tree canopy cover that exists in cities around the world. They have then used this data to give each of the assessed cities a 'Green View Index' score.

So far they have assessed 27 global cities. Treepedia only measures the tree canopies along city roads. It ignores parks and gardens. Therefore it is impossible to make a direct comparison between Treepedia and the Travelbird analysis. However it is interesting to see where cities score low or high in each analysis and where overall city greeness scores and road tree canopy scores diverge.

Paris scores quite low in both measures while Amsterdam scores reasonably high as both a city with a high percentage of green areas and a lot of roadside tree canopy.

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