Skip to content (press enter)

Blue Water Task Force (BWTF)

About the Program

The Blue Water Task Force is Surfrider’s volunteer water quality monitoring program that provides critical water quality information to protect public health at the beach. Surfrider chapters use this program to raise awareness of local pollution problems and to bring together communities to implement solutions.

Blue Water Task Force (BWTF) labs measure fecal indicator bacteria levels in recreational waters and compare them to water quality standards set to protect public health. Chapter-run BWTF programs fill in the gaps and extend the coverage of agency-run beach monitoring programs by sampling ocean and bay beaches, estuaries and potential freshwater sources of pollution such as stormwater outlets, rivers and creeks that discharge onto the beach.

View Your Local Water Quality

{{ }}
{{ locations.length }} sites tested

Water quality testing provided by Surfrider's {{}} Chapter

Meet Your Local Team and Get Involved!


Drew Madsen

Drew is a surfer, photographer, musician, and nature enthusiast from San Diego, California. He has lived in San Francisco for 3.5 years living in both the Outer Sunset and now the Outer Richmond districts. While he has no scientific background, Drew has been interested for a while in how he can make a difference in regards to climate change whether that is eating a plant based diet, learning and growing a passion for plants, trees, and horticulture, and recently volunteering with Surfrider after being a member for a little over 4 years. Being a person of color, fighting environmental injustice towards communities of color is something Drew looks forward to working towards with the Blue Water Task Force.


Yasmine El-Hage

Yasmine is a kite-surfer, Bay swimmer, and public health researcher who focuses on the relationships between human health and the health of our planet. She has worked with the UN, the International Rescue Committee, and the Norwegian Institute of Public Health, and is currently researching citizen science efforts in oil spill-affected coastal communities across the Americas. Of South American and Middle Eastern roots, born and raised in the Bay, she can't wait to highlight more of our diverse Bay Area community perspectives and languages in our work towards environmental health equity.


Our Science-Based Approach

Since the inception of the Blue Water Task Force program more than 25 years ago, Surfrider volunteers have been out in their communities testing water quality at the beach. Now a large national network with nearly 55 chapter-run labs, the Blue Water Task Force measures bacteria levels at more than 450 ocean, bay, estuary and freshwater sampling sites across the country. Surfrider chapters use this water testing program to raise awareness of local pollution problems and to bring together communities to implement solutions.

For more information or questions:

Drew Madsen -

Yasmine El-Hage - 

Everyone deserves access to clean water to surf, swim and play in.

Water Quality Information & Resources