People who use Americas beaches expect the water to be clean and uncontaminated. That often requires diligence and planning on behalf of coastal communities.
Last years water quality at the nations beaches mirrored results from 2010 that is, 8 percent of water samples violated public health standards, according to the Natural Resources Defense Council.
The council analyzed government data from more than 3,000 testing sites nationwide.
There were 23,481 health-related closing and advisory days in 2011, USA Today reported. The problems stem from storm-water runoff and sewage.
That was a little better (3 percent) than the previous year, but still ranked as the third-highest number of closings since the council started keeping track in 1990.
Unfortunately, the Great Lakes region was the worst when it comes to beach water standards: 11 percent of samples in 2011 violated health standards. The Mid-Atlantics Delmarva region proved the cleanest with a mere 4 percent.
The NRDC has compiled maps of more than 6,000 beaches, providing information on more than half of them.
Swimmers can contract several diseases from polluted waters, including stomach flu, skin rashes, pinkeye, dysentery, hepatitis, respiratory ailments and neurological disorders.
It pays to keep our waters clean and safe. Its good that the NRDC is keeping a record of beach water quality.