January 31, 2018

Photograph of hikersThe U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis on Feb. 14 will release for the first time prototype statistics measuring the economic effects of outdoor recreation – pursuits like boating, RVing  and snowboarding.

These prototype statistics covering 2012-2016 will be available in a news release and data tables posted on BEA’s website at 8:30 a.m. Eastern time.

These data will flow out of BEA’s Outdoor Recreation Satellite Account, a new project that will aid decision making by business people, policymakers and managers of public lands and waters and add to the public’s understanding of this important part of the U.S. economy.

Specifically, BEA is measuring “gross output” by type of recreation, such as boating, RVing and snowboarding, as well as by industry (for instance, manufacturing and transportation).

BEA is also measuring industries’ contributions to U.S. gross domestic product (called “value added’’) that are associated with outdoor recreation.

Information on employment and compensation for industries associated with outdoor recreation will also be available.

After the public release of these prototype statistics on Feb. 14, BEA will continue to gather feedback to help finalize the definitions, data sources and methodology it will use to measure outdoor recreation. This feedback also will help BEA shape its presentation of these statistics.

The outdoor recreation account was established by a 2016 federal law. More information about this project is available on BEA’s website.