- The Washington Times - Wednesday, August 3, 2005

Several local and state organizations in the metropolitan area provide advisories and information for recreational water activities, including beach-condition information and fish-consumption advisories.

In Maryland, log on to the Web site for the Maryland Department of the Environment (www.mde.state.md.us) and type “beaches,” “fish” or “water quality standards” into the site’s search engine. The department can be contacted directly by calling 800/633-6101, Ext. 3906.

In Virginia, the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality’s Web site (www.deq. state.va.us) provides impaired-water listings, and the Virginia Department of Health’s site (www.vdh.state.va.us) provides fishing advisories and information about beach closures and shellfish.

The Web site for the D.C. Department of Health (www.doh. dc.gov) offers information on water quality under the site’s Environmental Health section.

Also, www.earth911.org provides up-to-date advisories for beaches across the country. Earth 911 is an environmental program based in Scottsdale, Ariz., that brings together government entities, including the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, nonprofit and environmental organizations, and businesses to provide community-specific environmental information.

Shelley Widhalm

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