Quality of recreational waters: current knowledge and future perspectives

Mujeriego, R.

Watershed 89 the future for water quality in Europe Volume I: 71-85


Accession: 002200369

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The objectives of the paper were to analyse progress made during the 1980s on techniques for monitoring the microbiological quality of bathing waters, to evaluate the implications of current quality standards, and to discuss the criteria used in the promotion and certification of bathing areas. Advances made allow for the elaboration of more adequate and reliable monitoring programmes than those adopted until now. The statistical interpretation of experimental results, the quality control of microbiological laboratories and the selection of appropriate culture media are some of the essential components to the considered. Although the latest summary report prepared by the EC Commission represents a major advance in the implementation of the Directive 76/160, there is a need for a more homogeneous and consistent evaluation of bathing water quality. Bathing water quality is one of the main factors responsible for the attractiveness of the Mediterranean coasts. Programmes for the promotion and certification of bathing areas, such as the European Blue Flag, have to reply on a sound assessment of the quality of bathing areas.