SANTA MONICA—The Santa Monica Pier was ranked amongst the worst beaches in California. In Heal The Bay’s 2015 Beach Report Card, it was ranked sixth worst in the state.
Heal the Bay annually releases a ranking of the best beaches in California. On their website, Heal the Bay sites one of their primary objectives as fighting “to make Southern California coastal waters and watersheds, including Santa Monica Bay, safe, healthy and clean.” Santa Monica has routinely ranked among the worst in California. Last year, it ranked seventh worst in California in the same report. Also among the state’s worst beaches was Marina Del Rey’s Mother’s Beach, which came in at second worst on the list.
Despite Santa Monica and Marnia Del Rey, Los Angeles County as a whole is doing better in recent years in regards to its beaches. In 2012, Los Angeles County had seven of California’s top 10 worst beaches. This year, only three Los Angeles County beaches made the list, Cabrillo Beach, harborside being the third coming in at ninth worst behind Marina Del Rey and Santa Monica.
Malibu beaches had routinely ranked among Heal the Bay’s worst in California, including having four of the states worst 10 in 2012. For two years, Malibu beaches have managed to stay out of the bottom 10. San Francisco has had at least one beach in the bottom in each of the last three years and San Diego is back in the bottom 10 once again after avoiding the list last year.
In Heal the Bay report, they graded 468 beaches in California with A being the best possible grade and F being the worst. Over 95 percent of the beaches they graded were given either an A or B letter grade and only 13 of the 468 beaches were given D or F grades.
Heal the Bay credits the intense drought California is experiencing as one of the key reasons for the high number of quality beaches. The drought has caused their to be considerably less runoff into the ocean resulting in less polluted waters overall. Heal The Bay does note that during and directly after storms when runoff is especially high, that water quality is significantly worse.