Dec 28, 2000

Californians Concerned About Beach Closures

Most Orange County, Calif., residents consider beach closures due to poor water quality a pressing concern, according to a survey released by the Cal State Fullerton Center for Public Policy and the Orange County Business Council.
More than eight out of 10 interviewees said responded that the problem was "serious" or "very serious." Three quarters--including 70 percent of respondents who live in inland cities--said that all county residents should "pay equally" for beach protection.
About nine out of 10 respondents to the survey were ready to agree with any and all of the causes for beach closures proposed in the survey, including polluted runoff, careless beach goers and weak environmental enforcement.
"There is more similarity than difference in these responses to proposed causes of beach pollution," said political science professor Alan Saltzstein, one of the developers of the survey. "It may be fair to suppose that they are just reflecting their keen interest in the problem, saying ‘yes' to nearly every possible cause."
Despite uncertainty among Orange County residents regarding the causes of beach closures, "a call to action seems unmistakable," Saltzstein said. "I think that Orange County residents are saying, ‘Please fix it' without being very fussy about just what needs to be done."
(Source: Environment News Service)