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Water: Beaches

Proceedings of the 2009 National Beach Conference

The 2009 National Beach Conference provided a forum for:

  • learning about beach health initiatives across the country;
  • presenting new methods, indicators, and modeling techniques;
  • identifying beach health needs;
  • discussing priorities for short-term and long-term actions; and
  • recommending protocols and procedures to encourage greater consistency among jurisdictions.

You will need Adobe Reader, available as a free download, to view these filese. See EPA's PDF page to learn more about PDF, and for a link to the free Acrobat Reader.

Below are the proceedings:




Sunday, April 19, 2009
Beach Management 101 for state and local Beach Managers
Regional and State Meetings
Monday, April 20, 2009
Session I: Welcome Speakers (8 pp, 901K)
EPA Welcome—Ephraim King, US EPA OST
State Welcome—Alexis Strauss, Water Management Division Director, US EPA Region 9
"Riding the Wave..."—Laird Hamilton, Professional Surfer and Clean Water Advocate
"...of Emerging Science"—Steve Weisberg, SCCWRP
Session II: Changes in Policy: Perspectives from Around the World (PDF) (28 pp, 6.87MB)

Session Chairs: Lars Wilcut (US EPA) and Richard Whitman (USGS)

  • Beach Program: Emerging Science, Emerging Policy (Lars Wilcut, US EPA OST)
  • Canadian Recreational Water: New Water Quality Guidelines and Research Activities (Tom Edge, Environment Canada)
  • European Bathing Waters—Experiences from Scotland, UK (Calum McPhail, Scottish Environment Protection Agency)
  • Tribal Experience with Beach Management: Grand Portage Tribe (Margaret Watkins, Grand Portage Tribe)
  • Policies and Practices of Beach Monitoring in the Great Lakes (Richard Whitman, USGS)
Session III: Between a Rock and a Hard Place—Impacts of Infrastructure and Climate Change on Beaches (PDF) (41 pp, 10.2MB)

Session Chair: Julie Kinzelman, City of Racine, Wisconsin

  • Beaches Done Badly: Dealing with Historic Infrastructure (Dr. Greg Kleinheinz, UW-Oshkosh)
  • Alamitos Bay Circulation Study (Weixia Jin, Moffatt & Nichol and Tom Leary, City of Long Beach, CA)
  • Engineering Controls for Improving Storm Water Quality and Beach Health (Roger Miller, Miller Engineers & Scientists)
  • Stormwater Infrastructure Improvements: City of Los Angeles Innovative Approaches to BMP Designs for Clean Beaches (Wing Tam, City of Los Angeles)
  • Q & A
  • Climate Changes Impacts on Beaches: Common Themes with the Water and Sanitation Sector (Dr. Katrina Charles, University of Surrey, United Kingdom)
  • Estimating the Potential Economic Impacts of Climate Change on Southern California Beaches (Linwood Pendleton, The Ocean Foundation)
  • Q & A
Session IV: Notifying the Public (and Other Agencies) (PDF) (12 pp, 2.25MB)

Session Chair: John Wathen, US EPA

  • Denise Keehner, US EPA
  • Larry Honeybourne, Orange County Health Care Agency
  • Mark Gold, Heal the Bay
  • Pat Brennan, Orange County Register
  • Melissa Soline, Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Cities Initiative
  • Stephen Leatherman, Florida International University
Tuesday, April 21, 2009
Session V: Sanitary Surveys and Source Tracking (PDF) (35 pp, 8.75MB)

Session Chair: Shannon Briggs, Michigan Department of Environmental Quality

  • Lake Michigan Beaches—Identifying Contamination Sources through the Use of the US EPA/GLRC Standardized Sanitary Survey Tool (Julie Kinzelman, Racine and Greg Kleinheinz, UW-Oshkosh)
  • Sanitary Surveys—Marine Waters (Shannon Berry, South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Contraol)
  • Volunteers for Healthy Great Lakes Beaches (Lyman Welch, Great Lakes Beach Alliance)
  • Microbial Source Tracking: Using Lines of Evidence Through a Multi-Tiered Approach to Identify Human Fecal Contamination (Angela Coulliette, Michigan State University)
  • The Nose Knows—Tracking and Identifying Illegal Discharges to Surface Waters (Scott Reynolds, Tetra Tech-Michigan)
Session VI: Forecasting / Predictive Modeling (PDF) (34 pp, 7.89MB)

Session Chair: Holly Wirick, US EPA Region V

  • Implementing the Use of Predictive Models for Beach Closure and Advisory Decisions (Donna Francy, USGS)
  • Predicting E. coli for Large-scale Areas: Applications in Selected Indiana, Illinois, and Wisconsin Regions (Meredith Nevers, USGS)
  • A Model of Fecal Indicator Organisms and Viruses at Avalon Bay, Catalina Island, California, Provides Insight into Sources and Fate (Alexandria Boehm, Stanford University)
  • Tidal Saltwater Wetlands and Coastal Water Quality (Stanley Grant, UC Irvine)
  • Stability and Accuracy of Statistical Models for Predicting Beach Closures: Five Years of SwimCast Application in Lake County, Illinois (Greg Olyphant, Indiana University)
  • A Model of Microbial Water Quality at a Non-Point Source Recreational Beach (John Wang, University of Miami)
  • Predictive Modeling of Remote Beaches—Louisiana's Experience (Robert Wagner, Quantitative Ecological Services, Inc.)
  • Q & A
Session VII: Quantitative Microbial Risk Assessment (PDF) (36 pp, 8.99MB)

Session Chair: Joan Rose, Michigan State University

  • QMRA for Recreational Waters (Joan Rose, Michigan State University)
  • Quantitative Microbial Risk Assessment: Its Role Beyond Criteria to Risk Management (Nick Ashbolt, US EPA)
  • Microbial Risk Assessment of the Chicago Area Waterways (Geeta Rijal, Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago)
  • A Framework for QMRA: A New WERF-Funded Study (Stefan Wuertz, UC Davis, and Graham McBride (National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research, New Zealand)
  • Quantitative Microbial Risk Assessment: A Primer and Potential Applications for Nationally Applicable Water Quality Criteria (Jeffrey Soller, Soller Environmental)
  • Q & A
EPA Update on Recreational Criteria Development Efforts —Denise Keehner, US EPA OST
Session VIII: Debate (4 pp, 577K)

Session Chair: Ibrahim Goodwin, US EPA

Is the BEACH Act Investment Equal to the Risk Posed to Human Health? Should money that's spent on monitoring and public notification be spent on prevention and remediation?

Debate teams include:

  • University of Southern California
  • Michigan State University
  • Wake Forest University
  • University of Mary Washington
Wednesday, April 22, 2009
Session IX: Remediation, TMDLs, and Economics (PDF) (25 pp, 6.39MB)

Session Chair: Joel Hansel, US EPA Region 4

  • A Balanced Approach to Developing and Implementing Control Measures for Bacteria Impairment in the Los Angeles Region (Renee Purdy, Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board)
  • A Policy Comparison of Bacterial Pollution Management at Two Swimming Beaches in Southern California Using a Joint Physical-Behavioral-Economic Simulation Analysis (Justin Warren, Stanford University)
  • Use of a Watershed Model to Characterize and Prioritize Bacteria Sources for Mitigation in New Hampshire Coastal Beach Watersheds (Sonya Carlson, New Hampshire Department of Environmental Sciences and Caycee Dalton)
  • Remediation Experience in Myrtle Beach (Shannon Berry, South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control)
Session X: Rapid Methods and Alternative Indicators (PDF) (27 pp, 6.34MB)

Session Chair: Helena Solo-Gabriele, University of Miami

  • Emerging Detection Methods for Microbial Contaminants and HAB Toxins (Kelly Goodwin, NOAA)
  • A Complete Microbial Community Approach to Monitoring and Source Tracking Coastal-Zone Pollution (Eric Dubinsky, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory)
  • Testing and Validating Rapid Analytical Methods for Assessments of Recreational Water Quality (Rebecca Bushon, USGS)
  • Impact of Urban Runoff on the qPCR Signal of Enterococci and Other Alternative Fecal Indicators at a Tropical Beach (Marirosa Molina, US EPA NERL ERD)
  • California's Approach to Evaluating and Implementing Rapid Measurement Methods for Beach Water Quality Monitoring (John Griffith, SCCWRP)
  • Q & A
Session XI: Epidemiological Studies Underway (PDF) (28 pp, 6.71 MB)

Session Chair: Tim Wade, US EPA

  • Health Effects and Water Quality at Marine Beach Sites: Results from the National Epidemiologic and Environmental Assessment of Recreational Water (Tim Wade, US EPA)
  • Screening Candidate Water Quality Indicators for Associations with Swimming-Related Illness (Jack Colford, UC Berkeley)
  • The BEACHES Study: Health Effects and Exposures from Non-point Source Microbial Contaminants in Subtropical Recreational Marine Waters (Lora Fleming, U of Miami)
  • Contact with Beach Sand, Concentrations of Fecal Indicators, and Enteric Illness Risk (Christopher Heaney, UNC Chapel Hill)
  • Epidemiological Studies in the UK (David Kay, CREH Aberystwyth University, United Kingdom)
  • Estimating the Health Risks of Limited Contact Water Recreation (Sam Dorevitch, University of Illinois)
Session XII: Putting it All Together: Where Do We Go From Here? (5 pp, 877K)

Session Chair: Steve Weisberg, SCCWRP

  • Denise Keehner, US EPA
  • Shannon Briggs, Michigan Department of Environmental Quality
  • Mark Gold, Heal the Bay
  • Julie Kinzelman, City of Racine, Wisconsin
  • Alexandria Boehm, Stanford University
  • Grace Chan, Los Angeles County Sanitation Districts

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