Tourism and the shellfish industry are both integral components of the Maine economy and way of life. Yet elevated fecal bacteria levels in coastal waters may pose a human health risk, leading to closures of valued beaches and shellfish growing areas. Identification and remediation of harmful bacteria sources may require special studies and in-depth sanitary surveys beyond the immediate shoreline area. This can be challenging with limited resources and staff.
In response, the Maine Healthy Beaches Program developed a Municipal Guide to Clean Water: Conducting Sanitary Surveys to Improve Coastal Water Quality. This resource is meant to assist communities and resource managers in finding, fixing and preventing sources of bacterial pollution and was reviewed by over 30 professionals at the local, state and federal level.
The Maine Healthy Beaches Program is committed to improving beach water quality by bringing together local/state officials, partnering with state agencies, nonprofits and citizens with a focus on sharing resources and solving problems. Identifying pollution sources is only one part of the equation. It is equally important to find solutions to current problems and to take action to prevent future ones.
If a discussion and/or presentation would be useful for you or your community or if you have questions regarding any topic contained in the guide please contact:
Maine Healthy Beaches Program Coordinator
University of Maine Cooperative Extension/Maine Sea Grant
377 Manktown Rd. Waldoboro, ME. 04572
Tel. 207-832-0343 X 122; In ME- 1-800-244-2104;
TDD 1-800-287-8957; FAX: 207-832-0377
The Unites States Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA) initiated the Beaches Environmental Assessment and Coastal Health Act of 2000 in response to the growing concern about public health risks posed by polluted coastal bathing beaches. The Maine Healthy Beaches Program is taking a leading role in this initiative. Program implementation is a partnership between the Maine Department of Environmental Protection and University of Maine Cooperative Extension/ Maine Sea Grant.
Funding for this project was provided by U.S EPA