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Sullied Surf
July 29th, 2008

The water quality at New York State’s beaches is getting worse, according to a report by the Natural Resources Defense Council. The number of water samples taken at coastal and Great Lakes beaches that exceeded state standards for bacteria reached 11 percent in 2007, up from 9 percent in 2006. New York ranks eighth worse (out of 30 coastal states ) in terms of the percent of water samples taken at beaches that exceeded health standards. And it seems New York may have snagged the council’s prize for least forthcoming state.

On that measure, at least, the city does better by providing lots of data. And the environmental group’s report applauded the city’s monitoring of its beaches and its method of issuing advisories. But in describing the city’s pollution of its water, the report paints a sickening picture (particularly if you’ve been at the beach recently) of a witch’s brew of stormwater and sewage flowing into the sound and the ocean.

(For more on efforts to keep water safe and sands clean at city beaches, click here. And for Gotham Gazette’s tour — via audio slide show — of our not so pristine shore, go here.)

Despite that, the city’s beaches are cleaner than some of those on Long Island or along the Great Lakes.
As in previous years, the private Douglas Manor Beach was the city’s dirtiest by the report’s measure, with 20 percent of its samples exceeding standards. It was followed by Gerritsen/Kiddie where 14 percent of the sample did not meet health standards.

No city beaches ranked among New York’s worst. Fully 44 percent of the samples taken at the foulest beach — Suffolk’s County’s Tanner Park — exceeded state standards for bacteria. Next was Wright Park West in Chautauqua at 38 percent, Ontario Beach in Monroe (37 percent), Venetian Shores in Suffolk (33 percent), and Hamburg Bathing Beach and Woodlawn Beach-Woodlawn Beach State Park in Erie (both at 31 percent).

By on July 29, 2008, 2:42 pm
In category: Environment,Health,Waterfront | 1 Comment »

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One Response to “Sullied Surf”

  1. sustaiNYC » Blog Archive » Efficiently: There’s Sh*t In The Water Says:
    August 3rd, 2008 at 6:43 pm

    […] NY’s beaches = rather gross. […]

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