Beach report: 1 LA County beach makes list for worst water quality

Eric Resendiz Image
Wednesday, June 30, 2021
Beach report: 1 LA County beach makes list for worst water quality
Heal the Bay is a nonprofit organization based in Los Angeles that released a new report ranking California beaches from best to worst water quality using data from Summer 2020.

LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- Just in time for the holiday weekend, the nonprofit Heal the Bay released their annual beach report card. It lists California's 500 beaches, and ranked them from best to worst when it comes to water quality.

"We are a nonprofit based in Los Angeles and our mission is to protect the ocean and our water sheds and keep them clean," said Shelley Luce, president and CEO of the nonprofit. "California's beaches are absolutely critical to our wellbeing and to our local economy."

The report assigned A to F letter grades to beaches based on levels of fecal-indicator bacterial pollution using data from summer 2020. Ninety-three percent of the beaches received an A or B grade.

Of the 500 beaches in the state, 35 of them made it on the nonprofit's honor roll list for scoring perfect water quality grades year-round. Orange County had the most beaches on the list with a total of 10. Los Angeles and Ventura County had seven beaches each on the list. At the top of L.A. County's beaches is Royal Palms State Beach in San Pedro.

"A number of Malibu beaches ended up on the honor roll list again, which we were glad to see because a few years ago, we saw some pretty poor grades there," said Luke Ginger, a water quality scientist.

As for the beaches with the worst quality of water, the nonprofit listed 10 on the California's Beach Bummer List based on levels of harmful bacteria in the water. In Southern California, only one beach made it on the list. Ranking No. 5 is Marina Del Rey's Mother's Beach in L.A. County, between the lifeguard tower and the boat dock.

"Avoid swimming near storm drains at ocean beaches. You want to be 100 feet away from a drain. If you're in a river or creek avoid the area downstream of a flowing storm drain," said Ginger. "Wait three days after a rainstorm before going back in the water."

Click here to see the beach report card.

The nonprofit also released a report card of 28 freshwater recreation areas in L.A. County.

Click here to see the river report card.

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