2013-07-12 / Front Page

Maine beaches receive low marks

Only three states ranked lower in resource council study
By Michael Kelley Staff Writer


According to the National Resources Defense Council’s annual beach water quality report, Ferry Beach in Scarborough was among the beaches in Maine that had higher than acceptable bacteria levels. Officials say it is partially due to runoff from Scarborough Marsh. (Michael Kelley photo) According to the National Resources Defense Council’s annual beach water quality report, Ferry Beach in Scarborough was among the beaches in Maine that had higher than acceptable bacteria levels. Officials say it is partially due to runoff from Scarborough Marsh. (Michael Kelley photo) Sometimes a day at the beach is no day at the beach. A new water quality report from the Natural Resources Defense Council indicates beaches all across Maine, including in Scarborough, recorded higherthan acceptable bacteria counts in 2012.

In fact, the study, “Testing the Waters: A Guide for Water Quality at Vacation Beaches,” ranks Maine 27th of 30 states in terms of beach water quality.

“Our nation’s seashores continue to suffer from storm water runoff and sewage pollution that can make people sick and harm coastal economies,” stated Melissa Waage of the Natural Resources Defense Council in a press release announcing the findings. “Luckily, today more than ever, we know that much of this filth is preventable, and we can turn the tide against water pollution.

“By establishing better beach water quality standards and putting untapped 21st century solutions in place, we can make a day at the beach as carefree as it should be, and safeguard America’s vital tourism economies.”

Ferry Beach, a sandy beach along the Scarborough River, was among the beaches in Maine with the most water samples that exceeded the state’s acceptable bacterial level of 104 colonies/100 ml.

Other such beaches included: Goodies Beach in Rockport; Riverside Beach in Ogunquit; Laite Beach in Camden; Short Sands Beach in York and Crescent Beach in Kittery.

According to the study’s findings, nearly a quarter of Ferry Beach’s 17 water samples exceeded the standard.

This led to four water quality advisories last year. Higgins Beach had six advisories last year, but only eight percent of its 74 water samples exceeded the standard. Pine Point Beach had no advisories, even though 6 percent of its 16 water samples exceeded appropriate levels.

Perhaps Scarborough’s healthiest beach, Scarborough Beach, located on Black Point Road, had no water samples exceed acceptable bacteria levels.

Keri Kaczor, of the University of Maine Cooperative Extension and the coordinator of the Maine Healthy Beaches Program, said Maine beaches compare unfavorably because beach water quality is only measured in the summer months, meaning beaches have a much smaller sample size than those in California or Florida, where beaches are monitored year-round.

“When you have a small sample size, any exceedance will be amplified as a result,” Kaczor said.

Scarborough Community Services Recreation Manager Bill Reichl said much of the water quality issues occur when the area receives a lot of rain.

“Most of it tends to be from rainwater,” Reichl said. “If we get a lot of rain it affects the water quality, especially at Ferry Beach because everything tends to run into the river.”

Reichl said when water quality at beaches is deemed unsafe, Community Services, which monitors and operates beach parking lots, makes the public aware.

“We post online (at mainecoastdata.org). A sign at the beach is posted that there is an advisory. When the water clears up we take the advisory off,” Reichl said.

Kaczor said contaminated rainwater is more abundant in Scarborough, and particularly Ferry Beach, because of the wildlife that live in the nearby marshlands of Scarborough Marsh.

“Ferry Beach is an area with a lot of wildlife nearby. The bacteria we monitor does not indicate the source,” she said, adding the bacteria is most likely from animals, not sewage leakage.

She said the issue is amplified at Ferry Beach because the water is shallow and is not an open saltwater beach like many others in the area.

“Ferry Beach is a very healthy beach,” Kaczor said, “but it doesn’t take much to put it over the edge.”

Kaczor said in her opinion Higgins Beach is more of a concern although, according to the NRDC findings, it did not exceed the standard as much as Ferry Beach did.

Higgins Beach is located on the confluence of the Spurwink River, which Kaczor said has had a history of water quality issues.

“We are still trying to tease it out, but we are committed to working with the town and others to figure out what is going on there, ” Kaczor said.

Water quality is an issue that many seaside communities in Maine are facing.

“What is unique about the Gulf of Maine is, we have so many rivers and streams and fresh water inputs into the ocean,” Kaczor said. “With more rainfall and with warmer water, it is prime for bacterial growth.”

Bacterial growth is not just an environmental issue, but also a heath concern.

According to the release, exposure to water with high bacteria counts can lead to stomachaches, skin rashes, ear or eye infections, hepatitis and neurological issues.

“A day at the beach shouldn’t turn into a night in the hospital,” said Emily Figdor, director of Environment Maine in the release. Environment Maine is an environmental advocacy organization aimed at preserving Maine’s open spaces and protecting its air and water sources. “Maine beaches are summer playgrounds for local families, and they draw visitors from around the world.

“We need to do everything we can to clean up the sewage and contaminated runoff that put Maine beaches and beachgoers at risk. It will take action by our leaders in Augusta and Washington to be successful.”

Want to comment on this story? Login to our website at leader.mainelymediallc.com and let us know your thoughts.

Return to top

We definitely savoring every

We definitely savoring every single little bit of this. It is merely a great site and good reveal. I wish to appreciate it. Great job! You guys perform great blog, and still have some great posts. Sustain the good do the job. customer service center application

My friend mentioned to me

My friend mentioned to me your blog, so I thought I’d read it for myself. Very interesting insights, will be back for more! minecraft gratuit

Well Smile I love reading and

Well Smile I love reading and I am always searching for informative infoasdadrmation like this. This is exactly what I was looking.similar site like pinterest

Admire it regarding

Admire it regarding positioning the comely amuse…I was summary set regarding a manifold regular this…I identified that can peaceful good, employing likelihood, you would perhaps store positioning a immense sum of blogs.carbó girona

Great post! I am actually

Great post! I am actually getting ready to across this information, is very helpful my friend. Also great blog here with all of the valuable information you have. Keep up the good work you are doing here. electric longboard

Great post ! I am actually

Great post ! I am actually getting ready to across this information, is very helpful my friend. Also great blog here with all of the valuable information you have. Keep up the good work you are doing here.pabx

I really loved reading your

I really loved reading your blog. It was very well authored and easy to undertand. Unlike additional blogs I have read which are really not tht good. I also found your posts very interesting. In fact after reading, I had to go show it to my friend and he ejoyed it as well!Anarkali Dresses

I also benefit from learning

I also benefit from learning the assessments, but learn that alot of people ought to stay on essay to try and add worth in the direction of the authentic weblog release 2. El Müzik Seti

What a really awesome post

What a really awesome post this is. Truly, one of the best posts I've ever witnessed to see in my whole life. Wow, just keep it up.cool wallpapers

This site is a leading

This site is a leading resource for information about the Carrie Engel Innocent Words That Drive Men Wild PDF book and attraction system that teaches you how to use "innocent words" to grab a man's attention, capture his heart, and make him completely loyal to you.innocent words that turn guys on

Great post i must say and

Great post i must say and thanks for the information. Education is definitely a sticky subject. However, is still among the leading topics of our time. I appreciate your post and look forward to more.travel agency in delhi

Writing with style and

Writing with style and getting good compliments on the article is quite hard, to be honest.But you've done it so calmly and with so cool feeling and you've nailed the job. This article is possessed with style and I am giving good compliment. Best!meizitang ​botanical slimming

Very nice blog and articles.

Very nice blog and articles. I am realy very happy to visit your blog. Now I am found which I actually want. I check your blog everyday and try to learn something from your blog. Thank you and waiting for your new post. www.fallopiantubeblockage.com

I was very pleased to find

I was very pleased to find this site.I wanted to thank you for this great read!! I definitely enjoying every little bit of it and I have you bookmarked to check out new stuff you post.buy music promotion

I am looking for and I love

I am looking for and I love to post a comment that "The content of your post is awesome" Great work! dbx PA DRIVERACK

Great Post. I have not been

Great Post. I have not been visiting the site recently. Took a visit again and there were some great comments on the site. Excellent post. Keep up the good work. self hypnosis basics

A chance to see your article

A chance to see your article , your article let me know a lot of things , this article is really good .I'm Looking forward to your next one works . limousine

You are working on a very

You are working on a very good topic. I also want to work with you. I appreciate your great effort. Search USA

Thanks for this great

Thanks for this great website. I am trying to read some more posts but I cant get your website to display properly in my website. buc router

I check this site when I get

I check this site when I get free time in my busy schedule. I found lot of important news here. it helps me a lot. like everyday today i also got some great info here. I like your post. Its really awesome. 401K rollover

This school break I would

This school break I would like to learn how to dive properly. I saw that Elite Divers service offers scuba diving certification, therefore, I am going to apply for its courses. It is recreational to find a hobby to do during my summer holiday and this year it will be scuba diving.

Your article has proven

Your article has proven useful to me. It’s very informative and you are obviously very knowledgeable in this area. You have opened my eyes to varying views on this topic with interesting and solid content. Regal Assets Reviews

Well I completely agree with

Well I completely agree with you. I really like this article. It contains a lot of useful information. I can set up my new idea from this post. look at this site

I was very encouraged to find

I was very encouraged to find this njbnhgbhvb site. I wanted to thank you for this special read. weight burning pills

This is better a quite

This is better a quite saintly courier which I indeed enjoyed lesson. It is hardly ordinary that I bear the potential to detect something preference this. Bangor ME life insurance quotes

This is this sort apart apart

This is this sort apart apart apart away from your superb write-up to read. Stimulating me to evaluation an awesome provide a complete superb provide even a complete complete terrific provide an extraordinary provide even an awesome provide even a good offer more of your posts. retain up the superb work. garcinia cambogia pills reviews

latest fashion trends

latest fashion trends Great tips and very easy to understand. This will definitely be very useful for me when I get a chance to start my blog. best skin care informations

I have enjoyed this great

I have enjoyed this great information so much. This was really very interesting and helpful to read. I cant wait to read more from this site. Подать объявление

I really loved reading your

I really loved reading your blog. It was very well authored and easy to undertand. Unlike additional blogs I have read which are really not tht good. I also found your posts very interesting. In fact after reading, I had to go show it to my friend and he ejoyed it as well!antybiotyki na pryszcze

I'm excited to uncover this

I'm excited to uncover this page. I need to to thank you for ones time for this particularly fantastic read!! I definitely really liked every part of it and i also have you saved to fav to look at new information in your site.odleżyny

Written for consumers by a

Written for consumers by a consumer, this site includes a fun and informative How To Make Him Desire You review and buyers guide that provides an insider's look at the program and answers frequently asked questions about Alex Carter's unique and highly popular system for amplifying a man's love for you.Fotografia reportażowa

I was very impressed by this

I was very impressed by this post, this site has always been pleasant news Thank you very much for such an interesting post, and I meet them more often then I visited this site.Fotografia eventowa

The following tips will

The following tips will assist you as you get started in the lucrative field of web marketing. scottish power number

I have enjoyed this great

I have enjoyed this great information so much. This was really very interesting and helpful to read. I cant wait to read more from this site. External Battery Packs

I am no longer sure the place

I am no longer sure the place you're getting your info, but great topic. I needs to spend a while studying much more or understanding more. Thanks for wonderful info I was on the lookout for this info for my mission. tải game

Great post i must say and

Great post i must say and thanks for the information. Education is definitely a sticky subject. However, is still among the leading topics. online casinos no deposit

This is nice post which I was

This is nice post which I was awaiting for such an artice and I have gained some useful information from this site. Thanks for sharing this information truth about cellulite

I like your post. It is good

I like your post. It is good to see you verbalize from the heart and clarity on this important subject can be easily observed. hormone replacement melaleuca reviews

Excellent read, Positive

Excellent read, Positive site, where did u come up with the information on this posting? effects benicar lawsuit

Yes, great US Military force.

Yes, great US Military force. Also, in his post you have given a chance to listen about US Military. I really appreciate your work. Thanks for sharing it. kredietunie

I was very pleased to find

I was very pleased to find this site.I wanted to thank you for this great read!! I definitely enjoying every little bit of it and I have you bookmarked to check out new stuff you post. trip to Madagascar

Really great post, Thank you

Really great post, Thank you for sharing This knowledge.Excellently written article, if only all bloggers offered the same level of content as you, the internet would be a much better place. Please keep it up! web marketing

Very informative post! There

Very informative post! There is a lot of information here that can help any business get started with a successful social networking campaign! nba 2k14 locker codes ps4

This is exactly what I was

This is exactly what I was looking for. Thanks for sharing this great article ! That is very interesting Smile I love reading and I am always searching for informative information like this !concrete flooring

I'm glad I came across this.

I'm glad I came across this. I'm glad I took the time to read on past the first paragraph. You've got so much to say. Florida SEO Company

Good and different updates.

Good and different updates. You have described many information in one post. Now only I have got it. Thanks for sharing. effects benicar lawsuit

Thanks for this great post, i

Thanks for this great post, i find it very interesting and very well thought out and put together. I look forward to reading your work in the future. Dutch Clocks

What a really awesome post

What a really awesome post this is. Truly, one of the best posts I've ever witnessed to see in my whole life. Wow, just keep it up.http://www.dulhanwear.com

I really like the humor your

I really like the humor your publish has offered. I loved this website a great deal. Keep posting article such as this. It's fun. Nice photography too !Grand ménage à Laval

You're in point of fact a

You're in point of fact a just right webmaster. The website loading speed is amazing. It kind of feels that you're doing any distinctive trick. Moreover, The contents are masterpiece. you have done a fantastic activity on this subject! cpr classes tucson