Economic Loss

Some economic impacts include loss of revenue in nursery, farming and timber industries, increased roadside and power line maintenance costs, and an increased cost in maintenance of drainage ditches.

The Oregon Department of Agriculture (ODA) detailed economic impact in a 2000 strategic plan, citing $83 million of annual costs to Oregonians.  Their stance is that money spent early on invasives management means ‘savings,’ or money NOT spent, later on.  ODA’s 2014 assessment looks at the possible costs of about 20 species, given full infestation of likely habitat.  Those costs could range up to $25 million over the next ten years.

Looking more closely, there are many species with which agriculture cannot tolerate at any level:  dodder and barbed goatgrass.  For ranchers, purple starthistle and hairy whitetop dramatically reduce the suitability of rangelands, both from an economic and from an ecological perspective.