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The Genuine Progress Indicator, or GPI, is an alternative economic indicator that seeks to measure net economic welfare—the economic welfare that is gained by economic activity after the costs of producing that welfare (such as the costs of air pollution, water pollution, resource depletion, climate change, and the like) are deducted. From a GPI perspective, the economy of the Lower Mississippi River Corridor is not nearly as robust as traditional modes of economic analysis would suggest. There are clear paths to increasing GPI (and human economic wellbeing) that have implications for environmental, economic and river-management policy.


This report was prepared for the Missouri Environmental Coalition and responds to a GDP-based analysis of the economy of the Lower Mississippi River commissioned by the Lower Mississippi River Conservation Committee. The intention is to inform current policy makers and interested citizens of the shortcomings of economic analysis done in accordance with GDP-based metrics of economic success and economic wellbeing, and to give the outlines of a more accurate assessment of economic costs and economic benefits of development in the LMR Corridor.