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Economic and Social Impacts

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Spotlights

  • Global Invasive Species Programme.
    Invasive alien species are more often than not pigeon-holed as an environmental or biodiversity issue, and consequently – especially in developing countries – do not receive due recognition by policy-makers. Yet the reality is that they are a major threat to human livelihoods, especially to agriculture and therefore food security, and are generally undermining human well-being. Moreover, ongoing globalisation and increasing trade are escalating the problem to critical proportions. We hope that this booklet will contribute towards a better understanding of these links and to placing invasive species firmly on the development agenda. See also: GISP Publications and Reports for more resources
  • National Invasive Species Council Secretariat.
    To better understand the impacts of invasive species on infrastructure managed by the federal government an effort was undertaken by the National Invasive Species Council Secretariat to solicit feedback from those agencies. A questionnaire was sent out to the federal agencies that manage infrastructure to identify the impacts they have observed, how they are managing them, issues they have identified and resource needs. The research demonstrated that impacts from invasive species on federally managed infrastructure range from non-existent to significant. Identified gaps needing improvement include awareness and education of invasive species impacts, limited resources, insufficient policy, and lack of agency support. See also: NISC and NISC Secretariat Products for more resources
  • DOI. Fish and Wildlife Service.
    The negative consequences of invasive species are far-reaching, costing the United States billions of dollars in damages every year. Compounding the problem is that these harmful invaders spread at astonishing rates. Such infestations of invasive plants and animals can negatively affect property values, agricultural productivity, public utility operations, native fisheries, tourism, outdoor recreation, and the overall health of an ecosystem.
  • Weed Science Society of America.
    What losses would corn and soybean growers experience if they were forced to eliminate herbicides and other control techniques from their weed management toolbox? A team of experts with the Weed Science Society of America (WSSA) found that in the U.S. and Canada, about half of both crops would be lost to uncontrolled weeds, costing growers about $43 billion annually.

Selected Resources

The section below contains selected highly relevant resources for this subject, organized by source. To view all related content for this subject, click on "View all resources for subject" in the top left of this page.

Council or Task Force

Washington State Recreation and Conservation Office. Washington Invasive Species Council.
National Invasive Species Council.
California Invasive Plant Council.
Oregon Sea Grant; Oregon State University; DOC. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association.
Prepared for the Oregon Invasive Species Council. See also: Strategic Plans, Action Plans, and Annual Reports for more resources

Partnership

International Union for Conservation of Nature.
The aim of this toolkit is to provide a clear, user-friendly guide to the application of economic approaches and tools to invasive species. It addresses the issues associated with identifying the factors which cause the spread of invasives, incorporating consideration of invasive species into economic planning and policy-making, and identifying economic tools and measures to support on-the-ground management actions designed to address biological invasions. This toolkit has been produced for use in training courses to be held in Africa. It is targeted primarily at economists working in research and planning – in universities, research institutions, government agencies and non-governmental organisations. However, it is intended that the toolkit will also provide guidance on economics tools and approaches to scientists who are working on invasive species management.
CAB International.
Agriculture, forestry and fishing are of huge importance to the economies of developing countries. Invasive species affect the productivity of these systems, and limit the ability of producers to access export markets. This results in hardship and poverty, and hinders sustainable economic growth and development.
CAB International.
Invasive species are a major threat to the livelihoods of the people who live in the areas they colonize. Through disrupting ecosystems, invasive plants, insects and diseases impair many of the things humans need to sustain a good quality of life – including food and shelter, health, security and social interaction.
Great Britain Non-native Species Secretariat; Scottish Government.
The financial cost of non-native species has been published in a new report. "The Economic Cost of Invasive Non-Native Species (INNS) to the British Economy" suggests that invasive species cost 1.7 billion pounds every year. The research was conducted by the international scientific organization CABI for the Scottish Government, Defra and the Welsh Assembly Government and breaks down the effect on each country. It indicates that the economic cost of INNS can be wide ranging and can result in the loss of crops, ecosystems and livelihoods. The cost to the agriculture and horticulture sector alone is estimated to be 1 billion pounds across Britain. See Great Britain Non-native Species Secretariat - Reports for the full report and supporting document.

Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (South Africa); Global Invasive Species Programme.

See also: GISP Publications and Reports for more resources

Federal Government

USDA. Forest Service.
Holmes, Thomas P.; Aukema, Juliann E.; Von Holle, Betsy; Liebhold, Andrew; Sills, Erin. 2009. Economic impacts of invasive species in forest past, present, and future. In: The Year In Ecology and Conservation Biology, 2009. Ann. N.Y. Acad. Sci. 1162:18-38.
USDA. FS. Northern Research Station.
USDA. National Agricultural Statistics Service.
In 2016 NASS began to collect data on honey bee health and pollination costs. Provides reliable, up-to-date statistics help track honey bee mortality.

Academic

University of Alaska Anchorage. Institute of Social and Economic Research.