Blue Water Task Force
Our Science-Based Approach
Since the inception of the Blue Water Task Force program more than 25 years ago, Surfrider volunteers have been out in their communities testing water quality at the beach. Now a large national network with approximately 50 chapter-run labs, the Blue Water Task Force measures bacteria levels at nearly 500 ocean, bay, estuary and freshwater sampling sites across the country. Surfrider chapters use this water testing program to raise awareness of local pollution problems and to bring together communities to implement solutions.
For more information or questions:
Michelle Parker-Ortiz, Blue Water Task Force Manager
Meet the Blue Water Task Force
Everyone deserves access to clean water to surf, swim and play in.
Why Water Testing Is Important
The Blue Water Task Force provides critical water quality information to protect public health at the beach. Our labs measure fecal indicator bacteria levels in recreational waters and compare those results to local water quality standards.
Blue Water Task Force labs fill in the gaps and extend the coverage of agency-run beach monitoring programs by sampling ocean beaches, bay beaches, and potential freshwater sources of pollution such as stormwater outlets, rivers and creeks that discharge onto the beach. The Blue Water Task Force operates year-round, even through the off-season when, in many communities, lifeguards leave the beach and health officials stop collecting water samples.
General Blue Water Task Force Information
One-Stop-Shop for Beach Water Quality Monitoring across the U.S.
Surfrider's 2021 Clean Water Report
On Surfrider's Coastal Blog: Clean Water & Blue Water Task Force Stories
Standard Operating Procedures: Sampling and Lab Instructions
Blue Water Task Force 03 • 06 • 2023
San Luis Obispo Chapter sheds light on chronically high bacteria levels
Ways To Get Involved
Join our network and help us tackle the issues that face our ocean, waves and beaches.
Support Surfrider and our network of coastal defenders.
Take action right from your computer by contacting your elected officials.