Well here's some fine news (for a change) heading into Memorial Day weekend, which is the unofficial start of the summer beach season in Orange County: Things have improved so much at perpetually polluted Poche Beach that the San Clemente locale has been removed from Heal the Bay's annual Beach Bummer list.
Part of the reason for the better water quality at Poche is "an interesting falconry and coyote decoy program that eliminated roosting birds," reports Santa Monica-based Heal the Bay, referring to a city of San Clemente initiative.
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But there has also been less pollution along the entire California coast, something Heal the Bay attributes to the lack of rainfall in the drought-stricken Golden State. Rainfall routinely causes flood channels to fill up with water that collects pollution along the way before the runoff is pushed out to the ocean.
Whatevs. We'll take any good clean beach news we can get these days, which also includes this from Heal the Bay: 12 Orange County beaches made the nonprofit's Honor Roll, which recognizes beaches that scored perfect A+ grades for the report's three time periods. (Click here for the full report.)
By the way, another beach that darkened the Beach Bummer list with Poche just about every year was also dropped this year: Catalina Island's Avalon Beach.