Colorado gains ground in annual environmental survey

Matt Whittaker
Prototype electric vehicles on display in 2012 at at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory in Golden.Photo byDennis Schroeder / NREL via Flickr

By Matt Whittaker / NewsBreak Denver

(Across Colorado) A new report shows Colorado gaining ground in national ranking for eco-friendliness.

The state ranked as the nation’s eleventh most environmentally friendly state, according to personal finance website WalletHub. That’s one notch higher than last year and considerably better than 2021’s 17th place.

The report showed Colorado ranking highly – No. 5 nationally – in eco-friendly behaviors based on factors including the number of green buildings per capita, solar systems per household, renewable energy consumption and how easily companies can buy clean energy.

Colorado also scored relatively well – No. 12 in the nation – for environmental quality based on air, water and soil quality, and energy efficiency

But its overall ranking was weighed down by its climate change contributions, for which it placed 23 in the nation.

The most significant sources of greenhouse gas emissions in the state come from transportation, electricity generation, oil and gas development, and fuel use in homes, businesses and industrial applications, according to the Colorado Energy Office.

Colorado’s current plan for reducing greenhouse gas emissions calls for a 26% cut by 2025, 50% by 2030, and 90% by 2050 from 2005 levels. 

Part of that plan includes accelerating the shift away from internal combustion engine vehicles and toward electric cars, trucks and buses.

Gov. Jared Polis in January submitted an amended fiscal year 2023-2024 budget request that includes $20 million to $30 million per year for clean transportation. That funding would include extended and expanded electric vehicle rebates.

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Matt Whittaker writes about natural resources industries, including oil and gas, mining, renewable energy, agriculture and cannabis. He's been based in the Denver metro area since 2013. You can follow him on Twitter @mattswhittaker.

Lakewood, CO

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