Recently two reports were released on the Economic Impact of Recreation. One from the Outdoor Industry Association and another from the Western Governors Association. These are the first reports to consider the overall economic value of recreation that I am aware of. They are the first to consider the overall economic value of recreation.
It found recreation to be an Economic Giant at a staggering $646 Billion per year and growing (shown below)
Off Road Recreation is the second largest value at over $109 Billion based on combining the Off-Roading and Motorcycle categories. It accounts for about 17% of the total economic value of recreation. (Shown below)
Of course many of the other categories such as hunting, fishing, camping and snow sports also involve off road vehicles so the actual contribution of Off Road Recreation could be even greater.
You can see the report at:
It is good to have some numbers to help qualify why we need to protect and enhance all forms of recreation access and opportunity.
Travel Management has focused on Off Road Vehicle Recreation. Many have been concerned about the under rating of the economic value of OHV Recreation and lack of recognition for the need to keep more OHV trails open in order to support the economy and provide for this growing sport.
The value of recreation to the public and the economy need to be carefully considered when making plans for our public lands. For many our physical. mental and economic health depend upon robust abundant recreation access on public lands.
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