Quality of sea water
The sampling and analysis of sea water is carried out by the Department of the Environment. The quality of sea water around Jersey’s coast is important for a number of reasons:
- the health of the public swimming and those involved in water sports
- pollution of the environment
- Jersey tourism prides itself on having some of the cleanest beaches in Europe
- aquaculture industry eg oyster or mussel farming
Most popular beaches
Sea water at 14 of the most popular beaches around Jersey is monitored up to 20 times between mid May to the end of September each year. Bathing waters are classified annually based on samples collected from the previous four years. The classifications are 'Excellent', 'Good', 'Sufficient' and 'Poor'. Water samples are tested for the bacteria Escherichia coli and intestinal enterococci, which indicate whether there is faecal matter in the water. The annual classifications are shown in the sea water profiles.
Results from Jersey are submitted to the Marine Conservation Society for inclusion in the UK Good Beach Guide.
2018 monitoring calendar and results
Article 3(1) of the revised Bathing Water Directive requires sea waters to be identified on an annual basis. The length of the sea water season is to be defined each year.
The 2018 season will start on Wednesday 16 May and finish on Tuesday 25 September.
It is also a requirement to establish a monitoring calendar to identify days when water samples will be collected.
Bathing water season and calendar 2018
Bathing water results week 5
Bathing water results week 4
Bathing water results week 3
Bathing water results week 2
Bathing water results week 1
2017 sea water quality results
During the 2017 summer season, 11 of Jersey’s sea waters were of 'Excellent' quality, two were 'Good' quality and one was 'Sufficient' quality.
'Excellent' quality classification
- Green Island
- Grève de Lecq
- Havre Des Pas
- Le Braye
- Victoria Pool
'Good' quality classification
'Sufficient' quality classification
Sea water profiles
A profile has been produced for each of Jersey's monitored sea waters. As well as providing useful information they are a requirement of the revised Bathing Water Directive. Each profile includes:
- a photograph, description, map of the sea water and surrounding area
- an identification of potential sources of pollution and measures to reduce pollution
- the telephone number to report water pollution and contact details for further information
Greve de Lecq
Havre des Pas
St Brelade's Bay
When did sea water quality monitoring begin?
Monitoring started in 1992. Since then the Department of the Environment has been instrumental in developing the protocols for measuring sea water quality which are now used in a European directive and by the World Health Organisation.
From the start of the 2012 bathing season the type of bacteria that were monitored changed. These changes are a requirement of the reviewed Bathing Water Directive, based on recommendations from the World Health Organisation.
From 2015 bathing water classifications throughout Europe are based on sampling data collected over four years.