Surfing safe waves: Integration of water quality modelling in the evaluation of potential health risks

Rita Marteleira, Pedro Bicudo, António Guerreiro De Brito, Pedro Santos Coelho

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Surfing is becoming an important asset for local development, despite engaging water quality concerns is often limited to bathing season - thus, a tool for decision support is required to yearly forecast the water quality, in order to minimise health risks and support water management decisions. The QUAL2E model was used on a watershed, in Peniche, a coastal city in Portugal. This study area was chosen due to complaints related to the water quality by the local surfing community. Results returned a total coliform concentration of 1,500 MPN/100 mL, with pig farming effluents being the major contamination source. These results constitute evidence that surfing here may represent a health risk - as winter months are more favourable to wave sports. Therefore, it would be of the uttermost importance to improve monitoring and mitigate the potential health risk. This should include a more profound analysis of the contribution of diffuse sources and to extend the current bathing season monitoring scheme during winter times.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)105-119
Number of pages15
JournalInternational Journal of Hydrology Science and Technology
Volume8
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2018

Keywords

  • Decision support systems
  • Health hazards
  • Recreational waters
  • Simulation models
  • Surfing
  • Water quality

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