Miami Waterkeeper is excited to announce our contract renewal with Key Biscayne for water quality testing! We have a record of success collaborating with the Village of Key Biscayne including the past year of water quality sampling, which produced 215 data points from 3 sites. Past collaborations with the Village include our summer Senior Ambassador program, volunteer cleanups, and other educational events. Our efforts with the Village Council on issues such as a straw ban and water quality protections are also a testament to our connections to the Key Biscayne community.
The renewed plan will keep the public informed about water quality on Key Biscayne by testing three sites weekly to analyze Fecal Indicator Bacteria (FIB) enterococci. FIB is often used as a proxy for swimming safety - it can be easily cultured in a lab and ultimately help predict human health risks associated with contaminated waters.
These three sites were selected on account of their high volume of recreation and visitors: Biscayne Nature Center, Village Beach Park beachfront, and a site near the Key Biscayne Yacht Club. The results from the sites will be made available to the public via our free Swim Guide web and phone app. The plan also includes working to improve the communication of beach advisories to the public. In 2018, the app had over 68,000 views in our region, and 30,000 views at Key Biscayne and Virginia Key-specific sites.
(Source: Miami Herald)
Miami Waterkeeper works to ensure that those who enjoy these areas are well-informed before spending a day on the water or bringing along their family. However, for this to be sustainable among constituents, efforts must be made to educate individuals. Hence, Miami Waterkeeper will also hold a "1,000 Eyes on the Water” training on Key Biscayne for community members. The education initiative affords participants a formal training in properly identifying, documenting, and reporting pollution or issues they may encounter on or near the water. Through our "1000 Eyes Training" and our interactive reporting through Swim Guide, we hope to increase public awareness collectively among our team and residents of Key Biscayne.
Without clean water, Key Biscayne wouldn't be what it is today. Water is key to residents, visitors, and life on Key Biscayne. Through our work with the Village of Key Biscayne, we hope to further our mission to ensure swimmable, drinkable, and fishable water for all!