The Environment Protection Authority Victoria (EPA) is out across Port Phillip Bay and the Yarra River again this summer, monitoring water quality at 36 beaches and at four popular river water activity locations.
Victoria’s annual beach reporting season kicked off on the first day of summer, with Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change the Hon Lily D’Ambrosio officially launching the 2016-2017 summer season at South Melbourne beach.
EPA’s forecasts predict water quality based on the latest weather conditions, water quality history, recent bacterial sampling results and pollution reports.
Ms D’Ambrosio highlighted the health benefits of EPA’s forecasting, saying that it will enable people to make informed choices and help reduce their risk of illness, such as gastroenteritis.
“We’re putting people first by providing accurate, scientifically-informed information about Victoria’s waterways and catchments,” she said.
Following a successful pilot of SMS technology last year, beachgoers are invited to participate in an expanded trial to receive an SMS alert for when water quality at their local beach is rated poor.
Ratings of good, fair and poor are provided for each location online and via twitter. Water quality information will also be displayed on signs at 28 lifesaving clubs around the bay.
Last summer’s beach rankings show that Hampton, Seaford, Portsea, Canadian Bay, Sandringham, Elwood, Rosebud, Santa Casa and Black Rock beaches offered the best recreational water quality in Port Phillip Bay.
Further information about water quality or to sign up to text alerts visit: www.yarraandbay.vic.gov.au