18 Scottish beaches fail EU safety standards

According to the Sunday Herald, 18 popular Scottish beaches, most of which are on the southwest coast, are set to fail new sewage safety limits.

New bacterial pollution standards are to be introduced by the European Union in 2008 to protect public health and in March 2006 a new law came into force obliging member states to introduce a stricter regime. A list of the beaches which are expected to fail was released in response to a freedom of information request by Friends of the Earth Scotland.

The Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) listed the following beaches as being likely to fail the safety satndards: Ayr, Turnberry, Prestwick, Saltcoats and Ettrick Bay on the Isle of Bute, Ballroom Beach in Aberdeen, Portobello West in Edinburgh and Eyemouth in the Borders. According to SEPA, if the new bacterial safety limits were applied now 13 beaches in Scotland would be classed as “excellent”, 22 as “good”, seven as “sufficient” and 18 as “poor”.

SEPA will start to monitor the pollution on beaches this week with the start of the official bathing season on 1 June. Daily water quality predictions will be displayed on signs at 10 beaches, and will also be available as text messages.

Scottish beaches set to fail new EU sewage limits (Sunday Herald, 28 May 2006)