Erckenbrack Park, Marlin Park, and Lakeshore Park seashores in San Mateo County are on Heal the Bay’s 2021-2022 “Seaside Bummer Listing” for being among the many most polluted seashores in California.
San Mateo County is house to extra “Seaside Bummers” than some other county lately, in accordance with the report. Erckenbrack Park is on the listing for a 3rd straight yr, whereas Marlin Park is on the listing for the second consecutive yr. Lakeshore Park has been on the listing 5 occasions within the final 10 years.
In line with the report, these seashores are enclosed in an engineered patchwork of channels within the San Francisco Bay that don’t enable simple water circulation. The channels additionally acquired city runoff from surrounding residential and industrial developments.
Heal the Bay, a non-profit group based mostly in Santa Monica, does environmental advocacy work to guard coastal waters and watersheds in California. Heal the Bay launched its annual Seaside Report Card Wednesday, which assigns letter grades from A to F to 500 California seashores.
The grades are based mostly on the extent of fecal-indicator bacterial air pollution within the ocean measured by county well being companies. Fecal-indicator micro organism, equivalent to E. coli, stay within the guts of warm-blooded animals and are launched to the surroundings by means of fecal matter.
Most organizations that examine ocean air pollution are involved about fecal air pollution over different contaminants, like metals, as a result of fecal air pollution poses an acute well being threat, that means that one publicity could make somebody sick. In distinction, metals pose a continual well being threat, that means sickness is a results of extended publicity to the contaminant.
Different beached that made the “Bummer Listing” are Santa Monica Pier and Marina del Rey Mom’s Seaside in Los Angeles County, Newport Bay in Orange County, Tijuana Slough in San Diego County and Moonstone County Park in Humboldt County.
Heal the Bay deemed Playa Blanca close to Tijuana, monitored by San Diego County, the primary seaside bummer this yr.
General, 94 p.c of the California seashores evaluated by Heal the Bay acquired an A or B grade throughout summer time 2021, which is on par with the five-year common. Nonetheless, the report cautioned that polluted water poses a big well being threat to hundreds of thousands of Californians. Individuals who are available in contact with water graded C or decrease are at better threat of abdomen flu, ear infections, higher respiratory infections and rashes.
“A day on the seaside and the river should not make anybody sick,” stated Tracy Quinn, president and CEO of Heal the Bay. “It’s fantastic information that the majority seashores in California have good water high quality for swimming. However there are areas with poor water high quality that want enchancment and infrastructure upgrades. We won’t neglect that our marine ecosystems are nonetheless threatened by the local weather disaster and different air pollution sources, and we want options to handle these urgent points as nicely.We anticipate folks to more and more search out ocean shorelines and freshwater swimming holes to chill off the temperatures rise, so secure, clear, and wholesome water is required now greater than ever. “
Rain normally boosts the variety of pollution in seashores and rivers, and the report discovered that solely 66 p.c of California seashores had good or wonderful grades throughout moist climate, which was barely above common, however “nonetheless very regarding.” Final yr, coastal California county rainfall was 24 p.c decrease than the historic common.
General, solely 68 p.c of San Mateo County seashores acquired an A or B throughout summer time dry climate, 44 p.c acquired A and B grades throughout moist climate, and 78 p.c acquired A and B grades throughout winter dry climate.
In line with the report, there have been 38 sewage spills into our bodies of water in San Mateo County final yr, including as much as 3,950,039 gallons of sewage contributing to water air pollution.
All seashores in Alameda County and Contra Costa County earned an A or a B throughout summer time dry climate, giving the East Bay “excellent water high quality.” Nonetheless, throughout moist climate, solely 13 p.c of the seashores acquired A and B grades, a lot decrease than the historic common of 64 p.c.
All of San Francisco’s seashores acquired A’s or B’s throughout dry summer time months, which in accordance with the report, “is outstanding and above common.” Moist climate grades, nevertheless, have been “woefully unhealthy” with 0 p.c of San Francisco seashores receiving A grades and solely 17 p.c receiving B grades.
Mendocino County seashores obtained all A’s throughout dry and moist climate. Seashores in Mendocino haven’t acquired a grade decrease than a B within the final 5 years.