DER’s work is driven by the core principle that public funds spent on restoration should maximize the return on investment in terms of social, economic, and ecological benefits. While the value of restoring degraded habitats has long been recognized in Massachusetts, until recently the economic effects had not been empirically evaluated. To address this information gap, DER has commissioned three studies to evaluate and quantify the economic benefits produced by the Division’s project. The findings demonstrate that investment in ecological restoration creates jobs, stimulates economic activity and generates long-term economic value by improving ecosystems services.You can read a summary of the three phases or read the full reports below.

Economic & Community Benefits of Stream Barrier Removal

Phase 3: The average cost of 6 stream barrier removal projects was significantly less than the expense of repairing and maintaining existing structures over a 30 year period.

Estimates of Ecosystem Service Values from Restoration

Phase 2: Improved ecosystem services, such as water quality and flood reduction, generate significant economic value and help communities avoid millings of dollars of future costs.

Economic Impacts of Ecological Restoration in MA

Phase 1: Investment in restoration design and construction stimulates job create and economic output that equals or exceeds other capital projects like water and transportation infrastructure.