City of Santa Barbara, Calif., and University of California Release Source Tracking Guidance

Using microbial markers and other methods, source tracking can help identify sources of fecal pollution in stormwater and receiving waterbodies. Knowing the source of fecal pollution is an important first step to finding effective ways of eliminating it. The City of Santa Barbara, Calif., and the University of California–Santa Barbara recently released a guidance document that outlines test tools for tracking human waste signals. This research was driven by potential health hazards to beachgoers, as some Santa Barbara storm drains were discharging human waste. Researchers used methods outlined in the guidance document to identify four sites with persistently leaking sewage that were repaired immediately. Read more.

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