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United States’ Dirtiest City Revealed, And It’s Not New York

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Houston, Texas, is the dirtiest city in the United States.

A new study debunks the myth of spotless American cities. While major metropolises like New York are known for grime, a recent report by LawnStarter reveals a surprising truth – Houston, Texas, reigns as the dirtiest city in the US. Despite its reputation, New York only snagged the 12th spot.

LawnStarter’s ranking considers air quality, infrastructure, pest problems, and resident satisfaction. Houston’s dubious honor stems from its terrible air quality, crumbling infrastructure, and a massive cockroach infestation. The study, coupled with data from PestGnome (LawnStarter’s sister site), highlights Houston’s cockroach problem as the worst in the nation.

According to The New York Post, Cockroaches aren’t exclusive to Houston – San Antonio and Tampa join Houston in the top 3 cockroach capitals. On the other hand, those with a phobia of rodents should avoid Boston, Philadelphia, and Baltimore, which lead the pack for rodent infestations.

California, despite significant spending on cleaning initiatives, has several poorly ranked cities. San Bernardino, known as California’s “armpit,” claims the fourth dirtiest spot due to its atrocious air quality. The situation worsens in Riverside and Ontario, where pollution-heavy warehouses have replaced citrus groves, further degrading air quality. However, San Francisco shines as a beacon of relative cleanliness within the state. Their significant investments in street cleaning have placed them amongst the cleaner half of US cities.

The report goes beyond air quality. Dirty drinking water plagues the southwest, with every major city except Salt Lake City violating the Safe Drinking Water Act in 2020. Las Vegas, ranking 19th dirtiest overall, suffers from the most unsafe water in the region.

The study also sheds light on a unique littering trend. Ohio takes the cake for cigarette butt litter, with five of its cities boasting the highest number of smokers. This littering issue persists despite local anti-smoking campaigns.

Interestingly, coastal cities tend to be cleaner, with Virginia Beach topping the “most pristine” list. However, proximity to water doesn’t guarantee cleanliness – Fremont, California, and Winston-Salem, North Carolina, both rank highly despite being inland.

LawnStarter’s study paints a complex picture of cleanliness in the US. Big-city grime isn’t the only story – air quality, pests, and even drinking water quality vary significantly across the nation.

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