New Study Reveals Devastating Economic Impact of Harmful Algae Blooms in Lee County, FL: Join The League of Women Voters for Discussion

April 6 Discussion: How Water Quality Affects the Economy | News, Sports, Jobs

The League of Women Voters of Lee County is hosting an event titled “The Impacts of Water Quality on the Economy” and invites the public and members to attend. The discussion will take place on Saturday, April 6 from 9 to 11 a.m., with the program beginning at 9:30 a.m. at The Collaboratory at 2031 Jackson St. in Fort Myers. Participants have the option to attend in person or via Zoom.

To register for the event, individuals can visit Eventbrite, email lwvlee@lwvlee.org, or call 239-278-1032. The presentation will be given by Matt DePaolis, environmental policy director at the Sanibel-Captiva Conservation Foundation (SCCF), who will discuss the economic impact findings from a recent study conducted by Greene Economics on behalf of Captains for Clean Water, the Conservancy of Southwest Florida, and SCCF.

The study revealed that Harmful Algae Blooms (HABs) have had devastating economic consequences in Lee County alone, resulting in $195 million in recreational and commercial fishing revenues and expenditures, with an estimated 24,808 potential jobs lost and $3 billion in lost output. Additionally, property values were estimated to decrease by $3.8 billion, resulting in $21.4 million in lost property tax revenue, and the value of non-market recreation was estimated at $5.3 billion.

DePaolis’ background in environmental and marine biology makes him uniquely qualified to translate cutting-edge science into effective policy through advocacy. His experience includes field biology work in Florida

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