New Horizons in Environmental Economics series
Edited by Fred J. Hitzhusen
Chapter 12: Overview, Key Findings, and Approaches Including Benefit Transfer for Generalization of Research Results
12. Overview, key ﬁndings, and approaches including beneﬁt transfer for generalization of research results Fred J. Hitzhusen and Sarah A. Kruse OVERVIEW This book has reported on a large, eight-year research program at The Ohio State University to develop methods and estimates of the beneﬁts and costs of various water quality, infrastructure, scenic, and historic river corridor impacts and improvements as a guide to economic analysis and public policy on river and related watershed restoration. The research focuses on evaluation of rivers in the Great Lakes region of the United States and involves a team of environmental economists, an ecological engineer and two aquatic biologists. When the various corridor impact or improvement beneﬁts broadly conceived are expressed in a common economic metric and compared to their full economic costs, one has a basis for assessing river corridors in an economic development, welfare economic and public policy context. The earliest civilizations were developed along rivers for the rich farmland along their banks and easy transportation. Irrigation of farm lands and water powered industry were followed by large dams and locks for irrigation, residential and industrial water supply, recreation boating and ﬁshing, hydroelectric power and barge transportation of products. Rivers today have the potential to play an important role in the development of an economically depressed region by providing water supply, transportation, waste assimilation, and a wide array of recreation and tourism activities. Rivers as a source of waste disposal are increasingly in conﬂict with water supply, recreation...
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