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San Diego Beaches Get Top Grades

An environmental group says all of the 92 monitored beaches in San Diego County received top marks for water quality this summer. A big reason is the continued drought. KPBS Environmental Reporter Ed

San Diego Beaches Get Top Grades

An environmental group says all of the 92 monitored beaches in San Diego County received top marks for water quality this summer. A big reason is the continued drought.  KPBS Environmental Reporter Ed Joyce has more.

Heal The Bay says 92 locations in San Diego County were monitored between Memorial Day and Labor Day and all received either an A or B grade for water quality.

Heal The Bay's Mike Grimmer says recent efforts to divert storm drain runoff into sewage treatment systems helped local beaches.

But Grimmer says San Diego's grades benefit because county officials don't intensify monitoring once a beach has been closed because of a sewage spill.

Grimmer: In San Diego since there's a model which is proactively protecting public health we're not seeing the data gathering as extensive as we see in other coastal counties.

Most ot the county's eight beach closures last summer were at Imperial Beach and were caused by massive sewage flows into the Tijuana River from Mexico.

Grimmer says county beaches get good grades mainly because a second summer of drought limited the amount of stormwater runoff into the ocean.

Los Angeles county beaches didn't fare as well with nearly one out of five getting an F grade.

Long Beach had the worst beach water quality in the state.

Heal The Bay says Orange County had outstanding water quality over the summer, with 98 percent of its 104 monitored beaches getting top marks.

Ed Joyce, KPBS News.

 

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