Free Interactive Report
Sustainable Cities and Communities in the US
UN Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 11, Sustainable Cities and Communities, aims to make cities inclusive, safe, resilient, and sustainable by 2030. This includes providing accessible, affordable, and energy-efficient public transportation, protecting cultural and natural heritage, and providing access to safe green spaces.
80% of the US population lives in urban areas, covering just 3% of the country’s landmass.
Making US cities sustainable will require innovation in career and business opportunities, ensuring safe and affordable housing, investing in public transport, creating green public spaces, and improving urban planning. In 2019, 10 billion trips were taken on public transportation, saving an estimated 37 million metric tons of carbon from being emitted, however 45% of Americans report having no access to public transportation. Over 100 million people across the country, including 28 million children, don’t have a park within a 10-minute walk of home. Parks and green spaces that serve majority Black, Indigenous and people of color are, on average, half as large and nearly 5 times as crowded as parks that serve majority-white populations.
Use the tool below to view sustainability-related indicators nationally or by state, as well as an overview of the more than 124,900 nonprofits organizations that work on addressing related issues in the US. You can also discover 483 products and services in our Tech for Good Directory related to public transportation, affordable housing, disaster response, parks and museums and other key areas of community development.
on to the 10
using mass transit
Interactive Report Notes:
* The 10 Minute Walk Campaign is a nationwide movement led by The Trust for Public Land, National Recreation and Park Association, and the Urban Land Institute, to improve access to parks & green spaces by ensuring everyone in a city has safe, easy access to a quality park within a 10-minute walk of their home by 2050.
** Passenger trips are defined as the number of passengers who board public transportation vehicles. Passengers are counted each time they board vehicles no matter how many vehicles they use to travel from their origin to their destination.
Interactive Chart Sources:
- Museums & Aquariums: GC Insights analysis of forms 990 filed with the Internal Revenue Service -IRS 2018-2020
- 10 Minute Walk Campaign Cities & Population Impacted: GC Insights analysis
- Public Transportation Trips & Carbon Saved: GC Insights analysis of data provided by EPA.
- Nonprofit-related data: GC Insights analysis of over 600,000 forms 990 filed with the Internal Revenue Service -IRS 2018-2020
- UN – Cities
- Public Land Trust – 10 Minute Walk Campaign
- Infrastructure Report Card – Transit
- Scientific American – Who Benefits from Public Green Space?
- WRI – Green Space: An Underestimated Tool to Create More Equal Cities
- US DOT – Public Transportation’s Role in Responding to Climate Change
- APTA – Factbook
- ATPA – Public Transportation Facts
- The Trust for Public Land – Heat is On
- C2ES – U.S. Emissions
- Pew – Who relies on public transit in the U.S.
- Dedoussi, I.C., Eastham, S.D., Monier, E. et al.
- City Parks Alliance – Why City Parks Matter
- EPA – Heat Islands