An Economic Impact Analysis Of The Belgrade Lakes Watershed

Lucy G. O'Keeffe, Colby College


Environmental amenities such as lakes are often important drivers of local and regional economic activity (Bergstrom et al., 1990). An economic impact analysis is a common method used by economists and policymakers to estimate the direct and ripple effects of expenditures in an area. In my analysis of the Belgrade Lakes Region, I use consumer expenditure data collected from 445 year-round and seasonal residents of the Watershed. Based on the results of the Impact Analysis for Planning (IMPLAN) model, spending by year-round and seasonal residents has an annual impact of $6.84 million, including multiplier effects, and supports 68 full and part-time jobs in the Watershed. In terms of sales revenue and number of jobs created, the impact of household spending is greatest in the property maintenance, retail, and food and dining industry sectors.