Clockwise from top left: Vancouver

Vancouver one of world’s Top 10 Healthiest Cities: CNN report

B.C.'s biggest city placed among the elite for its 'clean air', which the network attributed to the city's dense downtown, lack of commuters

Vancouver is the fourth healthiest city in the world – and the healthiest in North America – according to a new ranking released by CNN.

Vancouver finished behind Copenhagen (first), Okinawa, and Monte Carlo, but finished just ahead of its liveability rival – Melbourne, Australia.

New York City came sixth, followed in order by Jonkoping, Havana, Singapore, and Napa.

In its findings, the news network said it consulted its own iReports and citizens in major cities or metro areas around the world to find out why their respective hovels “inspires good health and why they strive to make wellness a priority”.

“The leaders of these cities have implemented laws and policies that ensure locals have access to parks, nutritious food and public transportation,” reads CNN’s intro. “They’ve created innovative programs to combat disease and increased the quality of life for residents long into old age.

“A truly healthy city makes it easy for residents to adopt a healthful lifestyle, whether it’s by providing quality health care, encouraging preventive medicine or reducing air pollution. These cities top our list because they shine in one or more areas of good health.”

Each city in the Top 10 placed for its own reason, Vancouver’s being its “clean air”.

CNN reporter Jacque Wilson provided the write-up on B.C.’s biggest city, referencing its “dense downtown, a strong public transportation system and miles of bike lanes,” and also repeating the slogan that Vancouver is “the most walkable city in Canada”.

The shift away from a car-centered culture in one reason the city also has some of the cleanest air in the world,” writes Wilson. “At the same time, businesses and government have collaborated to build up downtown. As a result, there has been about a 75% increase in the number of people who live and work in Vancouver’s center in the past 20 years, which means fewer commuters driving in and out of the city.”

According to CNN, Vancouver has reduced its carbon emissions six per cent since 1990 while growing its population by 30 per cent and its jobs by 18 per cent.

Copenhagen finished first, its reason being the city’s “happiness” factor.

“Copenhagen is a bustling city full of ambitious professionals and young families. Yet working long hours here is frowned upon,” writes Danielle Dellorto. “Here’s one more stat that may make you want to start packing your bags for Denmark: 96 per cent of residents in Copenhagen say they can count on someone if they are in need.

“This supportive society is just another reason Copenhagen earns a spot as one of the healthiest (and happiest) cities.”

The full ranking and individual reasons are below:

1. Copenhagen, Denmark – Happiness

2. Okinawa, Japan – Longevity

3. Monte Carlo, Monaco – Low Infant Mortality

4. Vancouver, Canada – Clean Air

5. Melbourne, Australia – Livability

6. New York, U.S.A. – Anti-Smoking Laws

7. Jonkoping, Sweden – Elderly Care

8. Havana, Cuba – Preventive Medicine

9. Singapore, Singapore – Health Care System

10. Napa, U.S.A. – CNN iReporters’ Choice

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