Submitted to: International Soil and Water Conservation Conference
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: May 28, 2009
Publication Date: July 11, 2009
Citation: Nair, S., Sohngen, B., Fausey, N.R., Southgate, D., King, K.W. 2009. Recreational value of improved water quality in the Upper Big Walnut Watershed, Ohio [abstract]. International Soil and Water Conservation Conference. Technical Abstract: This paper examines how water quality improvement affects the visitation behavior of boaters and anglers in Upper Big Walnut watershed in Columbus, Ohio. The societal benefits from improved water quality are important for deriving the benefit-cost estimates of different nutrient reduction technologies. To account spatial impact of water quality improvement on visitation, the watershed is divided into 4 zones and the water quality is defined as percentage of streams within a zone that qualifies the EPA standards. The survey was administered just after the recreational season in 2008. The respondents were asked about their visitation during 2008 recreational season, probable changes in trip decision with new information about current water quality and changes in visitation decision if water quality improved considerably in the watershed. Additionally, distance traveled for visitation, total cost of visitation and other demographic information were also collected. The average recreational trips per person for anglers and boaters were 10.5 and 6.69, respectively. Only 14.3% anglers and 16.4% boaters would have made different number of trips if they had new information about current water quality before they made recreational plans for 2008 season. The water quality improvement would result in 6.98 and 3.82 additional number of recreational visits per person for anglers and boaters, respectively.