93.5% of Croatia’s Swimming Sites Rated as Having Excellent Water Quality

Total Croatia News

ZAGREB, May 29, 2018 – An annual report on the quality of swimming sites, released by the European Environment Agency (EEA) on Tuesday, shows that 93.5% of swimming sites in Croatia met the highest (“excellent”) water quality standards last year.

Every year before summer holidays, the EEA publishes a report on the quality of bathing waters in the EU member states and in Albania and Switzerland. The report covers bathing sites by seas, rivers and lakes.

All EU member states, plus Albania and Switzerland, monitor their bathing sites according to the provisions of the EU’s Bathing Water Directive. The bathing water is classified as “excellent”, “good”, “sufficient” or “poor”, depending on the levels of faecal bacteria detected. Where water is classified as “poor”, member states should take certain measures, like banning bathing or posting a notice advising against it, providing information to the public, and taking suitable corrective actions.

Nearly all 21,801 bathing water sites monitored last year met the minimum quality requirements under EU rules.

Karmenu Vella, European Commissioner for the Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries, said: “The quality of our bathing water is a source of pride for Europeans. That quality is due to good cooperation and constant vigilance. We all play a part: industry, local authorities and services together with citizens”.

Hans Bruyninckx, EEA Executive Director, said he was pleased with the results, but added: “We cannot be complacent. Keeping our bathing water clean requires our sustained attention by policy makers. That is why regular monitoring and assessment of bathing sites remains a crucial task.”

Last year, 85% of bathing sites received the rating of “excellent”, a slight drop from 2016 when 85.5% won this grade. Similarly, those meeting minimum “sufficient” standing fell from 96.3% to 96.0%. The reason for the slight drop was due mostly to the effect of summer rain on test results as well as changes in testing methodology in Romania and Sweden.

In five countries, 95% or more of bathing waters were assessed as being of excellent quality: Luxembourg (all 12 reported bathing waters), Malta (98.9% of all sites), Cyprus (97.3% of all sites), Greece (95.9% of all sites) and Austria (95.1% of all sites). In Croatia, 93.5% of all sites were rated as excellent.

All reported bathing water sites in Austria, Belgium, Croatia, Cyprus, Greece, Latvia, Luxembourg, Malta, Romania, Slovenia and Switzerland achieved at least sufficient quality in 2017.

The three countries with the highest numbers of bathing water sites of “poor” water quality were Italy (79 sites or 1.4%), France (80 sites or 2.4%) and Spain (38 sites or 1.7%).

The major sources of pollution are sewage and water draining from farms and farmland. Such pollution increases during heavy rains and floods due to sewage overflow and polluted drainage water being washed into rivers and seas, the EEA said.


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