&EFA
    United States
    Environmental Protection
    Agency
              EPA's BEACH  Report:
              Mississippi 2011  Swimming  Season
              ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^i
              July 2012
                      EPA820-F-12-015
  Introduction
  The Beaches Environmental Assessment and
  Coastal Health (BEACH) Act of 2000 authorizes
  EPA to provide grants to coastal and Great Lakes
  states, territories, and eligible tribes to monitor
  their coastal beaches for bacteria that indicate the
  possible presence of disease-causing pathogens
  and to notify the public when there is a potential
  risk to public health. The BEACH Act requires that
  recipients of those grants report their coastal beach
  monitoring and notification data to EPA. This fact
  sheet highlights the data submitted to EPA by the
  State of Mississippi for the 2011 swimming season.


  2011 Swimming Season
  Monitoring and Notification
  Actions
  Mississippi monitored 22 coastal beaches in
  three counties during the 2011 swimming season
  (Figure 1 and Table 1). When monitoring results
  at swimming beaches show that levels of specific
  indicator bacteria in the water exceed applicable
  water quality standards, Mississippi officials issue
  a beach advisory, warning people of possible risks
  of swimming.

  How many beaches had notification actions?
  In 2011 of the 22 coastal beaches that Mississippi
  monitored,  8 (36 percent) had at least one
  notification action (Figure 2). This is the lowest
  percentage in the past four years.
 Figure 1. Mississippi coastal counties.
Table 1.  Number of monitored and
        unmonitored coastal beaches
        by county for 2011.
1 County




HANCOCK
HARRISON
JACKSON
TOTALS
Total
Beaches
4
13
5
22
Monitored
4
13
5
22
Not
Monitored
0
0
0
0

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   Figure 2: Percent of beaches with one or
            more notification actions
   Figure 4: Percent of beach days open
            and safe for swimming
   Figure 3: Duration of beach notification
            actions in 2011
         1-2 days
                                   3-7 days
                                     84%
How many notification actions were issued and
how long did they last?
Mississippi issued 20 notification actions during
the 2011 swimming season. Typically Mississippi
lifts an action when follow-up monitoring indicates
that water quality complies with applicable
standards. For the majority of actions water quality
returned to normal and beaches were deemed safe
for swimming within a week or less (Figure 3).

What percentage of days were beaches under
a notification action?
EPA calculates the total available beach days and the
number of beach days with notification actions to
better track trends over time. Total available beach
days are determined by multiplying the length of
the beach season by the number of beaches in the
state. For 2011 EPA calculated that 4,686 beach days
                                                         2011

                                                         2010

                                                         2009

                                                         2008

                                                         2007
              To the Beach  }
              To the Beach  }
             MTo the Beach )
                jo the Beach}
98.6%

98.6%

98.2%

95.4%

94.7%
were associated with the swimming seasons of
the 22 monitored Mississippi beaches. Mississippi
reported notification actions on 64 days, meaning
that beaches were open and safe for swimming
about 99 percent of the time.  This percentage is
similar to the previous two years (Figure 4).


For More Information
For information about the Mississippi beach
program contact:
Emily Cotton
Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality
Tel: 228-432-1056
e-mail: Emily Cotton@deq.state.ms.us
For general information about beaches visit:
http://water.epa.gov/type/oceb/beaches/.
For information about a specific beach visit:
http://watersgeo.epa.goy/beacon2/.

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