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KENAI:RefugeRanked 2nd in Nation by Contributing to Local Economy
Alaska Region, October 6, 2005
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Kenai National Wildlife Refuge Manager Robin West joined managers from other Regions and Secretary of the Interior Gale Norton at a National Press Club event in Washington, D.C. on October 6 to release an updated report entitled:  "Banking on Nature".  The report, which focuses on the value of wildlife-dependent recreation to local communities, concluded that national wildlife refuges are significant economic engines providing an estimated $1.4 billion directly to communities while they go about their primary mission of conserving and enhancing wildlife and habitat.  While the total estimated economic demand summarized in the report was only for lower 48 refuges, Kenai Refuge was also evaluated and ranked second in the Nation for economic value ($57,942,300) creating an estimated 689 jobs with an employment income of $20,354,900.  Additionally, while refuges nationwide return some four dollars for every one dollar expended in their operation budget, Kenai's return in economic value to communities is almost fifteen dollars for every one dollar spent!  A copy of the 400 plus  page report can be viewed via a link from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's web page (www.fws.gov). 

Contact Info: Kristen Gilbert, 907-786-3391, Kristen_Gilbert@fws.gov



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