We can use a few new volunteers to cover our two existing sites in Pismo Beach and to expand the Blue Water Task Force (BWTF) program to three sites in Morro Bay and Cayucos. If you know of anyone who is interested in supporting clean water along the Central Coast they can get involved by contacting Niel at bwtf@slo.surfrider.org.

We have not had the  funds to collect samples at the sites in Morro Bay or Cayucos for several years, but, thanks to the outstanding efforts by Steve Allen, the program has received two grants that will support our work for an entire year. In June the BWTF was approved for a $5,000 grant from the San Luis Obispo Community Foundation to purchase supplies to allow us to continue collecting samples at our 11 existing sites and to expand the program to include Toro Creek and The Pit in Morro Bay and at the Cayucos Pier. Grant funds will also be used to develop an outreach program for children about the importance of clean water. The program will be developed in conjunction with our program partners at the Central Coast Aquarium.  

Receiving the grant from the San Luis Obispo Community Foundation qualified the BWTF program for a $1,000 matching grant that the program was awarded in late 2017. These funds will be used to support our work to document water quality in Avila Beach.

Over the last 6 years the work by the BWTF volunteers has created the largest and most thorough  database of the water quality conditions along San Luis Obispo Creek. The existence of this database was instrumental in the decision by Liz Pozzebon, Environmental Health Director for San Luis Obispo County, to support a recommendation that the County’s Public Works Department pursue grant funds to enable a source identification study of San Luis Obispo Creek. A source identification study is the essential second step that follows the initial data collection done by the BWTF. The results of a source identification study would identify the sources of the bacteria that our testing program has documented and propose a remediation program to remove the source(s) of the bacteria.

It has been an exciting month for the Blue Water Task Force program and we have a wonderful and challenging year ahead of us. All of the programs current and past volunteers deserve a huge Thank You from me for what they have made happen in support of clean water for the residents of the Central Coast.

Niel Dilworth
BWTF Coordinator