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  Wetlands

ECONOMICS

Wetlands are economically important ecosystems, but assigning a dollar value to their worth is difficult. The fiscal importance of wetlands comes from the protection they provide to valuable farm and urban lands against erosion; the role they play in reducing the damaging effects of floods and drought conditions; and improvements they make to water quality and navigation due to their role as sediment and pollution filters. The financial gain of these functions is immense but diverse and can fluctuate annually (Illinois Department of Natural Resources 1997).

In addition to reducing the costs incurred by humans from natural processes, wetlands are an important source of income. Non-consumptive wildlife use in the form of birding, wildlife photography, hiking, etc., is a multi-million dollar industry in Illinois that contributes to revenues from retail sales and income taxes and maintains thousand of jobs. Consumptive wildlife uses tied very closely to wetlands, such as hunting and fishing, contribute additional millions annually to Illinois economy (Illinois Department of Natural Resources 1997).

[ Introduction | Biological Functions | Threatened & Endangered Species | Hydrological Functions |  Water Quality | Ground Water Recharge | Terrestrial Functions | Aesthetics & Recreation   |  Economics | Conclusion ]

Return to Wetlands Home Page

Wetlands

 Wetlands Home Page
 Understanding Wetlands
 Functions and Values
 Status and History
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 Illinois Wetland Types
 National Wetland Inventory
 Publications
 Glossary Acronyms
 Literature Cited

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