Clean Coastal Water
Coastal water quality agencies struggle to meet clean water standards, impacting the health of coastal waters and wellbeing of residents and visitors alike. National, state, and local water quality agencies have limited ability to enforce current rules and laws and capacity to make changes needed to update outdated standards on emerging issues and take into account climate change. There are opportunities to strengthen capacity and enhance water quality management actions for contaminants of emerging concern, nutrient pollution, sea level rise, and wastewater/stormwater treatment all to improve coastal water quality for people and nature.
Wildfires are increasing due to climate change. This has been particularly acute in California, where higher temperatures and drought have extended the wildfire season, impacting both urban areas and wildlands as well as critical drink water supplies and infrastructure. However, there is limited understanding on post-fire effects of water quality, and even less that would inform coordinated regulation and policy at a regional and state-wide level. To address this, Coastal Quest is partnering with research institutes and local governments in California to develop a state-wide framework for monitoring post-fire impacts on water quality and infrastructure, pilot test the framework in fire impacted communities, and share the approach with other fire-impacted states and countries.