The U.S. economy is very dependent on healthy coastal and ocean resources. Consider the following facts:
14 percent of U.S. counties that are adjacent to the coast produce 45 percent of the nation's gross domestic product (GDP), with close to three million jobs (one in 50) directly dependent on the resources of the oceans and Great Lakes.
In 2011, the ocean economy, which includes six economic sectors that depend on the ocean and Great Lakes, contributed more than $282 billion to the U.S. GDP and provided more than 2.8 million jobs.
Tourism and Recreation account for 70 percent of the ocean economy's total employment and 34 percent of its GDP. Offshore Mineral Extraction accounts for another 37 percent of the ocean economy's GDP.
Every Kid in a Park is a federal government effort to get every fourth grader in the nation into public lands and waters during the school year. Come experience our special ocean, coastal, and Great Lakes places — all NOAA public spaces and visitor centers offer free admission!
At NOAA's National Ocean Service, we translate science, tools, and services into action to address threats to coastal areas such as climate change, population growth, port congestion, and contaminants in the environment—all working towards healthy coasts and healthy economies.