The Blue Water Task Force (BWTF) is the Surfrider Foundation’s citizen science program which provides valuable water quality information to beach communities, raises awareness of local water pollution problems and works collaboratively with local stakeholders to implement solutions. Surfrider’s network of volunteer-run BWTF labs measure bacteria levels at ocean and bay beaches and in freshwater sources, and compare them to the national water quality standards set by the Environmental Protection Agency to protect public health in recreational waters. Surfrider Kaua’i provides more information to beachgoers on where it is safe to swim and surf. The Hawaii Department of Health monitors water quality at life-guarded beaches, while the Kaua’i Surfrider Chapter tests nearly 30 surf breaks, estuaries, and popular freshwater recreational sites on a monthly basis. The Kaua’i Chapter also publishes an annual water quality report in their local paper and gives frequent talks in the community to build public awareness of local water quality issues.
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