Colorado River, Inc. : The $26 Billion Recreation Resource Employing a Quarter Million Americans
The Colorado River supports a quarter million jobs and produces $26 billion in economic output, drawing revenue from the 5.36 million adults who use the Colorado River for recreational activities each year.
They come for picnicking, trail activities, wildlife watching, camping, fishing, water sports, bicycling, snow sports, and hunting. These seemingly simple outdoor activities are major economic drivers fueling a multi-billion dollar recreation industry, and pouring millions of dollars into local businesses and state treasuries.
Direct Spending $3,794,644,820
Total Output $5,962,031,159
Employment 53,508 jobs
Fed, State, Local Taxes $763,857,410
Direct Spending $6,364,292,781
Total Output $9,577,271,371
Employment 79,585 jobs
Fed, State, Local Taxes $1,188,371,868
Direct Spending $1,996,169,031
Total Output $2,888,735,484
Employment 25,329 jobs
Fed, State, Local Taxes $358,613,631
New Mexico (PDF)
Direct Spending $1,206,132,350
Total Output $1,684,428,434
Employment 17,129 jobs
Fed, State, Local Taxes $191,158,581
Direct Spending $2,089,492,177
Total Output $3,351,775,769
Employment 34,100 jobs
Fed, State, Local Taxes $428,485,240
Direct Spending $1,587,748,500
Total Output $2,208,194,838
Employment 24,681 jobs
Fed, State, Local Taxes $302,732,874
California is also part of the river basin within its extreme southern section, but based on the limited population in this area and the expected low economic contributions from Colorado River-based recreation to the entire state's economy, California was not included in this study.
Similarly, out of state tourism is not a part of the estimates, The results reflect only residents' in-state travel. Considering the tourists who head West every year for vacation, it is important to note that the study findings are much more conservative with the exclusion of out-of-state tourism.
The economic analysis was conducted by Southwick Assoctiates, Inc., which specializes in quantifying the economics of fish, wildlife, and outdoor-related activities for government agencies and industry.
For media: Press release