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No study has been done, in Maine or elsewhere, to examine how different levels of water clarity affect the values people place on lakes they visit for recreation. These are people who do not own property, but use some form of public access for lake recreation such as swimming, boating, and fishing. Specifically, we focus on these peuple, whom we will refer to as "access users," to find out who uses Maine's lakes for recreation and how their use is affected by water clarity. The specific research objectives addressed include the following: (1) Estimate the number of access users. (2) Estimate the effects of water clarity on net economic values and expenditures, and consequently economic impacts, of access users. (3) Estimate the net economic value access users place on a statewide program to protect Maine's lakes from eutrophication Data to address these objectives were collected using a mail survey sent to a random sample of Maine residents who were at least 20 years of age.
Maine Agricultural and Forest Experiment Station
water quality, lakes, economic aspects, recreational use, Maine
Agricultural and Resource Economics
Schuetz, J.F., K.J. Boyle, and R. Bouchard. 2001. The effects of water clarity on economic values and economic impacts of recreational uses of Maine's great ponds. Maine Agricultural & Forest Experiment Station Miscellaneous Report 421.