Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Abandoned Mine Drainage in the West Branch Watershed

An Economic Benefit Analysis:
Abandoned Mine Drainage Remediation in the West Branch Susquehanna River Watershed

Sponsored by the Woodland Owners of Centre County

Rebecca Dunlap, Project Manager for Trout Unlimited’s West Branch Susquehanna Restoration Initiative, will be presenting An Economic Benefit Analysis for Abandoned Mine Drainage Remediation in the West Branch Susquehanna River Watershed, at 7 - 8 pm on Thursday, March 12th at Foxdale Village Auditorium in State College. For directions go to: http://www.foxdalevillage.org/location.html

In response to the nation’s current economic climate, environmental-related issues have taken a back-seat to domestic policy and unemployment. In fact, a January poll by the nonpartisan Pew Research Center cites that only 41% of voters deemed protecting the environment a top priority – down 15 points from last years’ 56%. While this precipitous drop is not surprising, it highlights the fact that environmental issues are not likely associated with job creation or increased local economic productivity.

Contrary to this evidence, Trout Unlimited recently published a study documenting the economic benefits associated with remediating local abandoned mine drainage pollution. The study reports that cleaning up the more than 1,200 miles of polluted waters and 42,000 acres of abandoned mine lands in the West Branch Susquehanna River watershed could potentially create approximately 6,000 green-collar jobs and an associated $800 million in economic benefits. The study also reports that streams free of abandoned mine drainage pollution would potentially generate $22.3 million in sport fishing revenue on an annual basis.

No comments: