EPA's  BEACH  Report:
             Wisconsin 2008  Swimming  Season
             May 2009
Introduction
The BEACH Act of 2000 requires that coastal
and Great Lakes states and territories report
to EPA on beach monitoring and notification
data for their coastal recreation waters. The
BEACH Act defines coastal recreation waters as
the Great Lakes and coastal waters (including
coastal estuaries) that states, territories,
and authorized tribes officially recognize or
designate for swimming, bathing, surfing, or
similar activities in the water.
This fact sheet summarizes beach monitoring
and notification data submitted to EPA by the
State of Wisconsin for the 2008 swimming
season.
In 2008, its sixth year of its beach program,
Wisconsin evaluated and redistributed
allocations to each of the contracting entities
based on the number of high, medium, or
low priority beaches, a minimum sample
per beach, and an adjustment was made for
travel reimbursement. The state contracted
with 16 individual health departments in
13 counties to conduct the routine monitoring
of 123 beaches along Lake Superior and Lake
Michigan. There was continued utilization
of secure  on-line input forms to update
information about beaches, monitoring
stations, and personnel utilizing the Wisconsin
Beach Health Website. Data entry protocols
were redesigned to be more efficient. An
automatic e-mail messaging service and a
really simple syndication service (RSS Feed)
provided daily updates on beach conditions to
the public. Close to 200 customers signed-up
for these updates for 540 beaches.
Three counties added their inland beach
monitoring data to the Web site. Furthermore,
several other counties adopted the inland
beach monitoring programs using guidance
developed from the coastal BEACH Act
program. Popular swimming beaches at state
parks and forests were tested at least 4 times
each week with results posted.
                                           Figure 1.  Wisconsin coastal counties.
                                 Kenosha
Table 1.  Breakdown of monitored and
        unmonitored coastal beaches by
        county for 2008.
County
ASHLAND
BAYFIELD
BROWN
DOOR
DOUGLAS
IRON
KENOSHA
KEWAUNEE
MANITOWOC
MARINETTE
MILWAUKEE
OCONTO
OZAUKEE
RACINE
SHEBOYGAN
TOTALS
Total
Beaches
7
19
9
53
16
5
7
5
17
6
13
1
12
7
16
193
Monitored
7
16
3
31
12
5
5
2
9
0
11
0
7
2
10
120
Not
Monitored
0
3
6
22
4
0
2
3
8
6
2
1
5
5
6
73

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2008 Summary Results
How many notification actions were reported and
how long were they?
When water quality standards are exceeded at a
particular beach, Wisconsin's approach is to issue a
beach advisory that warns people to avoid contact
with the water. A total of 84 monitored beaches
had at least one advisory issued during the 2008
swimming season. About 89 percent of Wisconsin's
578 notification actions lasted two days or less.
Figure 2 presents a full breakdown of notification
action durations.
What percentage of days were beaches under a
notification action?
For Wisconsin's 2008 swimming  season,  actions were
reported about 7 percent of the time (Figure 3).
How do 2008 results compare  to previous years?
Table 2 compares 2008 notification action data with
monitored beach data from previous years.
What pollution sources possibly affect investigated
monitored beaches?
Figure 4 displays the percentage of Wisconsin's
investigated monitored beaches possibly  affected
by various pollution sources. In 2008,100 percent
of the beaches reported that possible sources were
unidentified. Storm-related runoff was listed as
a possible source of pollution at 18 percent of the
beaches.

For More Information
For general information about beaches:
www.epa.gov/beaches/
For information about beaches in Wisconsin:
www.wibeaches.us
                                454
Figure 2: Beach notification actions by duration.
   500 -,
   450 -
   400 -
  350 -
  300 -
 | 250-
 O 200 -
 O 150 -
   100 -
    50 -
                                 1         2       3-7     8-30
                                         Duration of Actions (days)
                                                                  >30
                       Figure 3:  Beach days with
                                 and without
                                 notification
                                 actions.

                                    Beach days
                                   with an action:
                                       883
                                       (7%)
                                     Beach days
                                   with no action:
                                      11,479
                                       (93%)
                       Table 2. Beach notification actions, 2006-2008.

Number of monitored
beaches
Number of beaches
affected by notification
actions
Percentage of beaches
affected by notification
actions
Percentage of beach days
affected by notification
actions
2006
117
83
71%
11%
2007
118
85
72%
7%
2008
120
84
70%
7%
                     Figure 4: Percent of investigated monitored beaches
                     affected by possible pollution sources (120 beaches).
                                                        0    10   20   30
                                         Percent of beaches
                                          40   50   60   70
                                      80   90  100
Investigated / no sources found
      Non-storm related runoff
         Storm-related runoff
          Agricultural runoff
             Boat discharge
Cone, animal feeding operation
     Combined sewer overflow
      Sanitary sewer overflow
Publicly-owned treatment works
      Sewer line leak or break
       Septic system leakage
                  Wildlife
    Other (identified) source(s)
       Unidentified source(s)
                                                                18
                                                                                  Wofe: A single beach may
                                                                                   have multiple sources.
                                                                                                      100

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