Being dirty is seldom viewed as a good thing. And, making the list of dirtiest cities in America is definitely not something any municipality wants any part.

Unfortunately, one Louisiana city made the top 20 of this not-so-good list. We'll reveal which city that is in a bit. But first...

Who put out this list and what was the methodology?

LawnStarter, a lawn care provider, actually put this list out. They evaluated more than 150 of the biggest cities in the United States, focusing on pollution, living conditions, infrastructure, and resident satisfaction.

The study analyzed data from several federal agencies, including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Census Bureau, Department of Energy, and Environmental Protection Agency.

Storm Drain Outflow (stormwater, water, drainage)

So, which city topped the list?

Congratulations, Houston, Texas, you are the so-called "dirtiest city in America." It got bad marks due to high pollution levels, greenhouse gas emissions from large industrial plants, and a significant cockroach problem.

Researchers cited a 2022 report that found that some of Houston's "petrochemical facilities severely violated EPA safety guidelines."

Then in April of this year, the EPA announced that chemical plants like those along Texas' Gulf Coast and Louisiana's Cancer Alley must reduce toxic air pollution to help safeguard public health.


The Top 20 List

Here is the full top 20 list of "Dirtiest Cities in America":

  1. Houston, Texas
  2. Newark, New Jersey
  3. San Bernardino, California
  4. Detroit, Michigan
  5. Jersey City, New Jersey
  6. Bakersfield, California
  7. San Antonio, Texas
  8. Fresno, California
  9. Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
  10. Yonkers, New York
  11. Shreveport, Louisiana
  12. New York, New York
  13. Birmingham, Alabama
  14. Ontario, California
  15. Los Angeles, California
  16. Modesto, California
  17. Palmdale, California
  18. Hollywood, Florida
  19. Las Vegas, Nevada
  20. Fort Lauderdale, Florida

The worst in Louisiana

As you can see in the list above, the worst offender in the Bayou State is Shreveport, which checks in at #11.

BOLD Photography via YouTube
BOLD Photography via YouTube

What makes Shreveport so dirty?

Shreveport didn't do so well in some areas, including pollution and consumer satisfaction.

Here are some key rankings where the north Louisiana city didn't do too well:

  • Greenhouse-Gas Emissions (Metric Tons CO2e) from Large Facilities per Capita - 17th
  • Share of Homes with No Plumbing Facilities - 7th
  • Alternative-Fuel Stations per 100,000 Residents - 7th
  • Share of Residents Who Find City Dirty and Untidy - 15th
  • Share of Residents Dissatisfied with Greenery and Parks - 5th
Air pollution from vehicle exhaust pipe on road

What can we do as individuals to contribute to a cleaner city?

LawnStarter suggests that we, as individuals, must take responsibility for our cities. They say we must embrace cleanliness on many levels, from how we move to our daily habits.

It’s not just littering or trash on the streets. While that may be the most visible effect, there are more severe effects tied to global warming, and that affects all living organisms on our planet.

LOOK: These Are the Parishes With the Shortest Life Expectancy in Louisiana

Stacker compiled a list of counties with below average life expectancy in Louisiana using data from the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute.

Gallery Credit: Stacker

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