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Economists: Oceans and Great Lakes contributed $373 billion to U.S. in 2018

Without our oceans and Great Lakes, America’s economy would be a lot less robust.

That was the message issued in a report released Tuesday by the National Oceanographic Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) .

The two Department of Commerce agencies found the nation’s ocean-dependent activities, including goods and services, contributed about $373 billion to the overall U.S. economy in 2018.

The gross domestic product of the national marine economy also grew at a faster rate than the nation’s total gross domestic product — 5.8% compared to 5.4%. The businesses in the report accounted for 2.3 million American jobs with an average individual income of $70,100.

Gross domestic product is the total value of goods produced and services provided in a country during one year. It is often used as an indicator of how healthy an economy is in a nation or region.

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