Fishing vessel in port of Bayou La Batre, AL

Shrimping boat in Bayou La Batre, AL

Since the 2010 Deepwater Horizon (DWH) oil spill, there has been extensive data collection across the Gulf of Mexico region to better understand the economic impacts of the disaster, particularly on the fishing, seafood, and tourism industries in Gulf Coastal communities that were affected by the spill. There has also been a need to locate claims related to the oil spill— either made or paid out. To date, much of the publicly available information on the fisheries and tourism sectors comes from existing, standardized data sets that cover economic activity in these sectors, such as the U.S. Census Bureau’s Economic Census and the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages. However, other sources of information, particularly at the state and local levels, may also provide valuable information about these sectors and may not be as well known to users as the standard data sets. In an effort to close this knowledge gap, CRGC researchers working on assessing and addressing the economic impacts of the oil spill developed a new resource to assist business owners and employers, researchers, community members, and other stakeholders in locating information on the fisheries and tourism sectors, as well as on oil spill claims, from a wide variety of potential sources. The objective of the Database of Potential Sources on Fisheries, Tourism, and Oil Spill Claims is to make users aware of information sources that may be less widely known than standard databases of economic activity, such as those published by the U.S. Census Bureau, thus providing them with a wider range of resources to integrate for their own studies and projects. The Database and its User Guide, now accessible on CRGC’s new Resources page, was developed by Jacqueline Fiore (Tulane University), Craig Bond (RAND Corporation), and Shanthi Nataraj (RAND Corporation).