NRDC has dubbed these 35 popular beaches around the country as our Superstars! Out of a list of hundreds of popular beaches nationwide we developed over several years in consultation with state officials, NRDC's Superstar Beaches are those that did not exceed the previous national standard between 2009-2012 by more than 2% AND also did not exceed the EPA's new, more protective water quality threshold, the Beach Action Value (BAV), by more than 2% in 2013.
Percent exceedance rates in 2009-2012 are based on the national single-sample maximum standard for designated beach areas of 104 enterococcus bacteria colony forming units (cfu)/100 ml marine or estuarine water that was in place during those years. Exceedance rates for 2013 are based on the EPA's new Beach Action Value of 60 enterococcus bacteria cfu/100 ml marine or estuarine water. Beaches with fewer than 12 monitoring samples reported during the year are excluded from this list.