This paper uses hedonic analysis to examine the impact of small dam removal on property values in south-central Wisconsin. Data on residential property sales wereobtained for three categories of sites: those where a small dam remains intact, thosewhere a small dam was removed, and those where a river or stream has been free flowing for at least 20 yr. The primary conclusions that emerge from the data arethat shoreline frontage along small impoundments confers no increase in residentialproperty value compared to frontage along free-flowing streams and that nonfrontage residential property located in the vicinity of a free-flowing stream is more valuablethan similar nonfrontage property in the vicinity of a small impoundment.
Changes in forest overstory lead to changes in runoff. This report estimates what such changes in runoff are worth to society using two sources of information: economicvaluation studies and, most importantly, water market transactions. Evidence from over2,000 transactions that occurred in the western U.S. over the past 14 years (1990 through 003) was examined to learn who is selling to whom and for what purpose, how muchwater is involved, and how much it is selling for. Roughly half of the transactions were sales of water rights; the rest were water leases. The transactions show that the price ofwater is highly variable both within and between western states, reflecting the localized nature of the factors that affect water prices. Ideally, if water market prices or valuationstudies are to be used to help determine the marginal value of water from specific areas, such as national forests, information from local markets or local studies should be used.Lacking site-specific value information, only rough estimates are possible.
Thomas C. BrownRocky Mountain Research StationU.S. Forest ServiceFort Collins, Colorado
Formulation of recovery plans for endangered salmon populations in the Columbia River Basin of North America is a complex, controversial resource-management issue. This report presents an integrated assessment model to analyze the biological-economic tradeoffs in recovery of Snake River spring/summer-run chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha).The authors find that the removal of an estuarine predator, the Caspian tern (Sterna caspia), and elimination of adult salmon harvest are recovery measures that markedly increase long-term population-growth rates regardless of transport effectiveness. Dam breaching significantly increases growth rates under the best available estimate of transport effectiveness. The authors also conclude that recovery strategies in the cost-effective set depend on assumptions about transport effectiveness. Tern removal and harvest elimination are generally cost effective. At the best estimate of transport effectiveness, strategies that discontinue smolt transportation or breach dams are prevalent in the cost-effective set. In contrast, strategies that maximize transportation are prevalent in the cost-effective set if transport effectiveness is relatively high. This paper links biology and economics through an integrated model thus providing a valuable tool for science-based policy and management.The paper can be downloaded from Michael R. Moore's website at https://sitemaker.umich.edu/micmoore/working_papers
This US Fish and Wildlife Service filed a report with FERC on the economic value of refuge based recreation across the nation, on Dec 6, 2007. The main objective of the study was to estimate the national impact of refuges on their regional and local economies. This report studied 80 sample refuges (of a total of 548) and presented findings on: 1. Visitor Recreation-Related Expenditures2. Economic Effects Associated With Refuge Visitation, and3. Summary of Economic Effects of Refuge Visitation. Summary findings:1. In 2006, 34.8 million people visited wildlife refuges resulting in $1.7 billion in sales and $185 million in tax revenues. 2. Activities related to refuge visitation resulted in employment for 27,000 peopleIt concludes that recreational visits to national refuges generate substantial economic activity.The report is available here.