Document Type


Publication Date

Fall 9-2016


This document summarizes the status of coastal and marine resources in the Northeast region of the United States, and how these resources generate economic and ecological value. The Northeast region, for ocean planning purposes, includes the coastal counties of Maine, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut, and the New York counties (bordering Long Island Sound) of Queens, Bronx, Suffolk, Nassau, and Westchester. The coastal and marine natural resources and coastal infrastructure of the Northeast, and the economic activities and cultural/recreational services that rely them, directly and indirectly support more than 500,000 jobs and $40 billion in economic value (GDP) per year (2013 data) in the region. This represents about 2% of the region’s overall economy. In addition, US Navy and Coast Guard activities in the region support more than 10,000 jobs and account for billions of dollars per year in federal expenditures in the region. The region’s coastal and ocean resources also generate significant ecosystem service value in the region and beyond, though these values are not well quantified. Coastal and marine recreation and tourism account for about half of the region’s ocean economy GDP and for more than 70% of ocean economy employment. The maritime transportation sector account for 16% of ocean economy employment and 29% of ocean economy GDP in the region; ship and boat building accounts for 11% of employment and 13% of GDP; and commercial fisheries and seafood processing account for 6% of employment and 8% of GDP. Information about the spatial distribution and status of coastal and marine resources and the economic activities that make use of them inform and support the Northeast ocean planning process.