The Impacts of Harmful Algal Blooms and E. coli on Recreational Behavior in Lake Erie

David Wolf, Wei Chen, Sathya Gopalakrishnan, Timothy Haab and H. Allen Klaiber


This paper examines simultaneously the effect of E. coli and harmful algal blooms on recreational behavior using survey data collected from Ohio recreators who visited Lake Erie during the summer of 2016. Using simulation based on latent class models of recreation choice, we find beachgoers and recreational anglers would lose in aggregate $7.7 million and $69.1 million, respectively, each year if water quality conditions were to become so poor that Lake Erie’s western basin were closed. Finally, we recover heterogeneity in recreators’ aversion toward algae and Escherichia coli, with beachgoers more averse to E. coli and anglers more averse to algae. (JEL Q51, Q53)

View Full Text

This article requires a subscription to view the full text. If you have a subscription you may use the login form below to view the article. Access to this article can also be purchased.

Purchase access

You may purchase access to this article. This will require you to create an account if you don't already have one.