Friday, April 3, 2009

What are the benefits of Cooperation for Environmental Clean Up Projects?

"The study analyzes the relative contribution that various government sectors –
federal, state, and local – should play in paying for this essential component of the economic recovery of the Great Lakes region. Of course, cities, states and the region will see direct benefits from such a recovery. But a healthy Great Lakes economy benefits the national economy, grows the national tax base, and provides other benefits, such as easing congestion and slowing population
growth in coastal areas that already are overtaxed. The study concludes that all three government sectors should make substantial investments in Great Lakes restoration."

What are some of the benefits for communities who work together to solve complex environmental problems?

They have diverse groups of active citizens: people who posess the motivation, skills and confidence to speak up for their communities and say what improvements are needed.

Stronger communities: public participation provides communities with the capability and resources to bring people together to work out shared solutions.

Funding and working partnerships with public agencies: public agencies or universities willing and able to work as partners with local people.

The Michigan Country Lines posted the following on September 10, 2007.

"A plan to clean up and protect the Great Lakes environment would boost the regional economy by more than twice its $26 billion price tag, according to a study released last Wednesday.

In an analysis of a Great Lakes restoration plan proposed two years ago, the Brookings Institution said measures such as halting sewer overflows, cleaning up toxic spills and combating invasive species would go beyond helping the ecosystem.

They also would generate at least $50 billion worth of long-term economic benefits such as promoting tourism, raising coastal property values, cutting costs for cities and attracting new residents, the report said.

Additionally, the infusion of public money into the region to carry out the cleanup would produce a short-term ripple effect worth $30 billion to $50 billion, it said.

“These restoration activities are not just nice things to do for the environment; they are crucial things to do for the economy of our region,” said John Austin, a senior fellow with the Brookings Institution’s Metropolitan Policy Program and a member of the team that produced the report.

Protecting the lakes does not require sacrificing jobs or economic growth, Austin said during a telephone news conference. “If anything, this report suggests that cleaning up the Great Lakes will be a jobs engine,” he said.

The report should help generate support in Congress for funding the cleanup, said Andy Buchsbaum, co-chairman of Healing Our Waters-Great Lakes Coalition, which helped sponsor the Brookings study.

“This investment pays off and it pays off quickly,” he said."

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