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The Value of Ecosystem Services in Lower Sabino Creek

Lower Sabino Creek Economic Valuation Report cover

When we measure the value of Sabino Creek as we would other community assets, such as a bridge or building, Sabino Creek has a net value of $146 million – $230 million over a 100-year lifespan! This staggering number comes from a recent economic analysis conducted by Seattle-based nonprofit Earth Economics in partnership with WMG.

The analysis showed that, by a conservative estimate, Sabino Creek provides $1.4 million – $2.1 million in “ecosystem service” benefits—including clean water and air, urban heat island mitigation, outdoor recreation, and flood control—to the Tucson economy each year. Amazingly, these services are provided to us free of charge if we properly care for the Sabino watershed. The economic valuation of Sabino Creek is another tool in our toolbox to build a broad coalition of support for restoring flow to Tucson’s rivers.