Dams per 100 Square Miles

Dams per 100 Square Miles

What does this measure?

The number of dams per 100 square miles.

Why is this important?

While dams can provide benefits such as economic activity, renewable power, and flood control, many dams are rapidly aging and come with significant costs. Dams can contribute to water pollution of their related watershed, as well as impacting local environments and habitats. Additionally, as dams age, their infrastructure can weaken and increase the chance of failure, potentially endangering human life and property. The more dams in an area, the more monitoring and infrastructure investment they require to ensure the safety of those in the surrounding areas. Pennsylvania is one of seven states in the U. S. in which high hazard potential dams count for more than half of the dams in the state.

How is our county performing?

As of 2015, Berks County contained 3.6 dams per 100 square miles, for a total of 31 dams in the county. This is a slightly higher concentration than Pennsylvania on average, which has 3.4 dams per 100 square miles, and a much higher concentration than the country as a whole which has an average of 2.6 dams per 100 square miles. Berks County contains 2% of the total dams in the state.

Compared to neighboring counties, Berks had a larger number of dams overall than Montgomery (29), Lancaster (24), Lebanon (13) and Lehigh (11) counties. It had far fewer dams than Chester (43) and Schuylkill (54) counties. When considered in terms of the size of the county, Berks had a similar rate of dams per 100 square miles to Lebanon (3.6) and Lehigh (3.2). Berks had fewer dams per 100 square miles than Chester (5.7), Montgomery (6.0) and Schuylkill (6.9). Lancaster County (with a rate of 2.5) had the lowest rate.

Notes about the data

No information about which dams are considered hazardous is made available due to terrorism concerns. Data for this indicator is updated every two years and is next expected to be released in 2018.

There may be additional research available on this topic. Click on Reports and Resources to learn more.

Dams per 100 Square Miles
United States2.6
Berks County3.6
Berks County Regions
Reading city
Berks County Peers
Chester County5.7
Lancaster County2.5
Lebanon County3.6
Lehigh County3.2
Montgomery County6.0
Schuylkill County6.9

Source: U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

Number of Dams
United States90,580
Berks County31
Berks County Regions
Reading city
Berks County Peers
Chester County43
Lancaster County24
Lebanon County13
Lehigh County11
Montgomery County29
Schuylkill County54

Source: U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

Early Prenatal Care Increasing
Early Prenatal Care by Mother's Race/Ethnicity Increasing
Children Living in Poverty Increasing
Children Living in Poverty, by Race/Ethnicity Maintaining
Single-Parent Families Increasing
Single-Parent Families by Race/Ethnicity Decreasing
Disengaged Youth Maintaining
Live Births to Teen Mothers Decreasing
Change in Population by Age and Gender Maintaining
Change in Total Population by Race/Ethnicity Increasing
Population by Age and Race/Ethnicity Decreasing
Foreign-Born Population Increasing
Language Diversity Increasing
Unemployment Rate Maintaining
Change in Labor Force Decreasing
Employment to Population ratio Maintaining
Change in Jobs by Sector Not Applicable
Sector Share of Total Jobs Not Applicable
Average Salary by Sector Not Applicable
Change in Average Salary Since 2000 Increasing
People Entering/Leaving County/Region for Work Increasing
Public Assistance Maintaining
Spending for Local Governments Maintaining
Spending for Counties Maintaining
Spending for School Districts Maintaining
Quality Early Childhood Centers Not Applicable
Prekindergarten Participation Increasing
Students Eligible for Free/Reduced Price Lunch Increasing
English Language Learners Increasing
Students Receiving Special Education Services Increasing
Per Student Spending Maintaining
Historically Underperforming Student Performance on Grade 3 English Decreasing
Historically Underperforming Student Performance on Grade 3 Math Increasing
Historically Underperforming Student Performance on Grade 8 English Increasing
Historically Underperforming Student Performance on Grade 8 Math Decreasing
Student Performance on High School English Decreasing
Student Performance on High School Math Increasing
High School Cohort Graduation Rate Increasing
Education Levels of Adults, by Race/Ethnicity Maintaining
Brain Drain/Gain Increasing
Plans of High School Graduates Increasing
Median Household Income Maintaining
Median Household Income by Household Type Maintaining
Living Wage Maintaining
People Living in Poverty Increasing
Working Poor Maintaining
People Receiving Federal Food Assistance Increasing
People Enrolled in Medicaid Managed Care Increasing
People Without Health Insurance Increasing
Physically Inactive Adults Not Applicable
Adults Who are Overweight or Obese Not Applicable
Students in 7-12 Overweight or Obese Increasing
Vacant Housing Units Increasing
Homeownership Rates Decreasing
Housing Affordability for Homeowners Maintaining
Housing Affordability for Homeowners by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Housing Affordability for Renters Increasing
Housing Affordability for Renters, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Age of Housing Stock Decreasing
Single-Family Home Sales Increasing
Median Single-Family Home Sale Price Maintaining
Tourism Spending Maintaining
Voter Registration Rate Decreasing
Voter Participation Rate Increasing
Average Charitable Giving Maintaining
Contributions as a Percentage of Income Maintaining
Households With Internet Access Increasing
Dams Not Applicable
Violent Crimes Maintaining
Property Crimes Decreasing
Incarceration Rates Maintaining
Drug Abuse Offenses Increasing
Drug Abuse Arrests Increasing
Protection from Domestic Abuse Maintaining
Means of Transportation to Work Maintaining
Average Travel Time to Work Increasing
Crashes Involving Alcohol Decreasing
Households Without Vehicles Decreasing