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News Cyprus gets top marks for clean bathing water

Cyprus has scored top marks in the latest EU annual bathing water report, which shows 100 per cent of bathing areas surveyed in 2009 comply with EU mandatory cleanliness levels.

This is the second year running when every area, including sea, lake and river bathing areas, complies with the guidelines, putting Cyprus above the European average of 96 per cent for coastal bathing areas and 90 per cent for rivers and lakes.

The study measured physical, chemical and microbiological parameters, such as Escherichia coli and Streptococci for six months from May 1st to October 31st 2009, in 111 bathing areas. These areas add up to about 0.5 per cent of total surveyed areas.

Two per cent of EU coastal bathing sites were banned in 2009, mostly in Italy.

Environment Commissioner Janez Poto?nik said “Over the last thirty years, EU and national legislation has significantly improved the quality of Europe’s bathing waters but our work does not end here. Despite our decade-long track record of high quality, we need to keep up the effort constantly to both improve and maintain what we have achieved.”

Professor Jacqueline McGlade, Executive Director of the European Environment Agency, added, “Further improvement to Europe’s bathing water quality requires citizen involvement. This means, first and foremost, finding out and understanding the current state of our environment and then demanding cleaner water from relevant authorities. Our web-based tools provide citizens easy access to environmental information as well as a platform to voice their observations.”

Almost all the coastal bathing sites in Cyprus, France, Greece and Portugal complied with the more stringent guide values. Although inland bathing sites show greater variation in water quality, a large majority of the inland sites in Finland, France, Germany and Sweden also complied with guide values.

Of the 20 000 bathing areas monitored throughout the European Union in 2009, two thirds were on the coast and the rest were at rivers and lakes. Compliance with minimum quality requirements at coastal sites increased from 80 per cent in 1990 to 96 per cent in 2009. For inland waters, the increase was even greater, rising from 52 per cent to 90 per cent.

Contact information n/a
News type Inbrief
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Keyword(s) EU-WFD
Geographical coverage Cyprus, bathing water
News date 23/07/2010
Working language(s) ENGLISH