WalletHub, a personal finance website, released its 2023 “Greenest States” list. They compiled a list ranking all 50 states from the greenest to the least green. The list compared the states across three categories: environmental quality, eco-friendly behaviors, and climate change contributions.

“Eco-friendliness and personal finance are related,” stated the Managing Editor of WalletHub in the report, explaining that every person, through spending choices has an impact on the environment. “We spend money through our own consumption and taxes in support of environmental security.”

The metrics and methodology

Those three categories were evaluated using 25 metrics. For example, the environmental quality dimension includes four of those metrics, such as soil quality. Each of the metrics was weighed on a 100-point scale, with a score of 100 being the highest level of eco-friendliness, according to WalletHub.

Michigan has incredible natural wonders such as the Great Lakes, lush forests, and serene fly-fishing streams, along with a range of eco-friendly initiatives. From electric vehicle charging stations to LEED-certified hotels, the state prioritizes sustainability. In fact, Mackinac Island has been free of emissions since 1898 and even prohibits automated vehicles. Michigan’s dedication to the environment earned it a ranking of 14th place, with a total score of 66.08. It’s worth noting that Michigan also tied for first for having the highest soil quality.

Which state ranked the highest?

In general, most of the top 10 states were located near the coast, with a few exceptions. New York was the highest-ranked Atlantic state, coming in at number 2. Following closely behind were Maryland, Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Maine ranked at numbers 5, 6, 7, and 10.

On the opposite side of the country were the Pacific states of California, which ranked at number 3, and Hawaii, which came in at number 4.

Vermont, the state that topped the list, is located neither on a lake nor an ocean. However, with an impressive overall score of 78.44, it has been deemed the greenest state owing to its high rankings in environmental quality and eco-friendly behaviors. It is known as the Green Mountain State.

Take a look at how all 50 states ranked here.