EPA Report Highlights Importance of Water to U.S. Economy

The U.S. EPA is releasing a synthesis report on ?The Importance of Water to the U.S. Economy.? The report is intended to help raise the awareness of water?s importance to our national economic welfare and to summarize information that public and private decision-makers can use to better manage the nation?s water resources.

It also highlights the EPA?s review of the literature and practice on the importance of water to the U.S. economy, identifies key data gaps and describes the implication of the study?s findings for future research. The EPA hopes this report will be a catalyst for a broader discussion about water?s critical role in the U.S. economy.

According to the EPA, water is vital to a productive and growing economy in the United States, and directly affects the production of many goods and services. While some data are available about how important clean and available water is to various economic sectors ? including agriculture, tourism, fishing, manufacturing and energy production ? the information is often dispersed and incomplete. Additionally, understanding the economic significance of water is difficult because it depends upon several interacting elements: The volume supplied; where and when it is supplied; whether the supply is reliable; and whether the quality of the water meets the requirements of its intended use.

For more information and to view the full synthesis report, please visit water.epa.gov. To view a special blog on the report by EPA Acting Assistant Administrator for Water Nancy Stoner, visit http://blog.epa.gov/epaconnect/2013/11/importance-of-water.

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