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James R Meldrum

Research Economist

Fort Collins Science Center

Office Phone: 970-226-9176
Fax: 970-226-9230
ORCID: 0000-0001-5250-3759

2150 Centre Avenue
Building C
Fort Collins , CO 80526-8118

Supervisor: Rudy Schuster
When evaluating resource tradeoffs, natural resource planners, field staff, and socioeconomic analysts often require economic value estimates and other information related to resources that are not priced in conventional markets. Benefit Transfer is one methodological approach used to estimate the economic value of those non-market goods and services. Benefit Transfer uses value estimates of non-market goods and services reported in previously conducted primary studies to estimate the value of that same good or service in a policy-relevant area where a primary study has not been conducted. The Benefit Transfer Toolkit is designed to facilitate the economic valuation of multiple recreation uses and other ecosystem...
Tags: Efforts
This pilot leverages National Water Quality Assessment (NAWQA) stream health data collected in Oregon’s Willamette River Valley and Washington’s Puget Sound to estimate the economic value of water quality in this region of the Pacific Northwest. The USGS NAWQA Program is currently conducting a regional assessment of water-quality, habitat stressors, and biological communities (including salmon) in the Willamette River Valley and Puget Sound, with the overall goal of evaluating the relative importance of factors affecting stream health throughout the region. Sampling will take place across more than eighty stream sites in the region to analyze gradients of human disturbance, characterize chemical stressors,...
Categories: Project; Tags: Front Page, Pilot Study
Serving as the scientific backbone to the Federal Government’s ecosystem services priorities, the Sustaining Environmental Capital (SEC) Initiative builds upon the U.S. Geological Survey's existing programs and expertise related to water, fisheries, modeling, and economic valuation. The goal of the SEC Initiative is to develop, integrate, and enhance natural resource management decision support tools, systems, and information to enable managers with the ability to better account for the benefits people receive from ecosystem services in the decision-making process.
Drylands make up approximately 35% of the US and 80% of DOI lands, all located in the West and especially the Colorado Plateau. Consisting of arid and semi-arid ecosystems, drylands are strongly resource-limited with low resilience and resistance to abiotic perturbations. Thus, small environmental changes often have disproportionally large ecological effects. One source of disturbance in the region is energy exploration and development (EED), which has also been a major driver of economic growth and social change in the western US for more than 100 years. In 2007, there were almost 90,000 abandoned and current wells spanning 60 years of activity on the Colorado Plateau, and the number of wells has been increasing...
Wilderness management agencies are charged with administering the Wilderness Act and subsequent legislation, while balancing that with handling the relationship between the public and lands protected as wilderness. In addition to benefits related to recreation and the existence values of wilderness, many benefits key to human well-being (e.g., clean water and air; refuges for threatened plants and animals) flow off-site from wilderness. The Aldo Leopold Wilderness Research Institute’s Wilderness Economics Working Group (WEWG) facilitates research collaboration among federal agencies on the economic and social dimensions of current and emerging issues confronting American wilderness areas. The WEWG has identified...
Tags: Pilot Study
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