Economic Impacts of Marine-Dependent Industries

A variety of industries that contribute significantly to the economies of Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Florida depend on the Gulf of Mexico. The Gulf of Mexico Sea Grant programs have actively supported these industries for decades, and the Texas, Louisiana and Florida Sea Grant programs recently released a report, The Importance of Gulf of Mexico Marine Dependent Industries and Measuring Sea Grant Programming Benefits on those Industries. The report was designed to provide internal guidance for demonstrating how Sea Grant benefits local, regional and state economies, but it also includes important information about the economic impacts of these industries — commercial fishing, seafood processing, seafood retailing, recreational fishing, and environmental recreation and tourism — on these states and the region.

Texas Sea Grant published a summary document, Texas Sea Grant: A Vital Part of Our State and Supporter of Its Marine Industries, that focused on economic data about marine-dependent industries in Texas and described Texas Sea Grant’s support of these industries. “Industries can be valued, and while we don’t take credit for that value, those numbers show that the people and industries we work with are an important part of the Texas economy,” says Andrew Ropicki, Texas Sea Grant’s Marine Economics Specialist.

In 2012, Gulf of Mexico-related industries accounted for approximately $161 billion of the United States Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and 5.9 percent of GDP in the five Gulf States. In Texas alone, these activities were 8.5 percent of GDP.

While Sea Grant can’t always quantify its contribution to these industries with hard numbers, other evidence can show the importance of its work. For example, an effort to improve fuel efficiency in the Texas shrimp fishery resulted in savings of 14.86 million gallons of diesel fuel, worth $41.19 million, without affecting catch amount.

Economic contributions of marine industries in Texas include:

$194 million in commercial fisheries landings in 2012, 25 percent of the Gulf total

4,792 jobs in commercial fishing in 2012

2,019 jobs in seafood processing in 2011

13,818 jobs in the retail seafood business in 2012

15,150 jobs, $1.85 billion in output impacts, and nearly $1 billion in value-added impacts from recreational fishing in 2011

12 million wildlife-watching trips in 2011, top among the Gulf States, with 4 million participants spending $1.8 billion.

Commercial Shrimp Fishery

These bulletins present the economic impacts of the shrimp fishery on the Texas economy at the state and local level. Due to high variability in dockside harvest value, economic impacts were estimated using 10 years of landings data for three scenarios: a good year, an average year, and a poor year. Estimates are generated for labor income, value-added, output, and jobs created due to the shrimp fishery.

Economic Impacts of the Texas Shrimp Fishery

Economic Impacts of the Cameron County Shrimp Fishery

Economic Impacts of the Palacios Shrimp Fishery

Economic Impacts of the Jefferson County Shrimp Fishery

Recreational Fishing

Understanding the economic impacts of recreational fishing in Texas bay systems can inform local and state policymakers on the economic importance of this popular Texas pastime and help them make informed decisions about how to manage natural resources, weigh the concerns of different stakeholder groups in evaluating policy options, and determine the value of promoting different types of recreation and tourism. Working with Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service staff, Texas Sea Grant estimated the annual economic impacts of marine recreational fishing of several bay systems on the Texas coast.

The Economic Impacts of Recreational Fishing in the Lower Laguna Madre Bay System

The Economic Impacts of Recreational Fishing in the Upper Laguna Madre Bay System

The Economic Impacts of Recreational Fishing in the Corpus Christi Bay System

The Economic Impacts of Recreational Fishing in the Aransas Bay System

The Economic Impacts of Recreational Fishing in the San Antonio Bay System

The Economic Impacts of Recreational Fishing in the Matagorda Bay System

The Economic Impacts of Recreational Fishing in the Galveston Bay System

The Economic Impacts of Recreational Fishing in the Sabine Lake Estuary