Information Board at Delray Beach Municipal Beach
Delray Beach Municipal Beach Central information board displays Blue Flag program information, safety details, activities for the public, and more. photo credit: Blue Flag USA

Blue Flag beaches are awarded annually for meeting over 30 criteria in environmental education and information, water quality, environmental management, and safety and services. Blue Flag USA’s managing organization, the American Shore & Beach Preservation Association (ASBPA), is dedicated to ensuring effective sediment management for sustainable coastal ecosystems.

 

Blue Flag builds on ASBPA’s previous work on the national nourishment database, the beach and inlet management policy, and the Best Restored Beaches Award incorporating elements of daily management and environmental education. Criterion 2 requires applicants to offer and promote 5 unique educational activities to beach users. When determining qualifying activities, sites first look at what activities are already underway or ongoing programing which can be used to fulfill criteria.

 

The Delray Beach Municipal Beach site met criterion 2 by promoting their Natural Dunes Educational Video on their information board. The video provides viewers with information about beach maintenance history, practices, and their impacts on safety, ecological diversity, and recreation. It effectively promotes awareness of coastal protection projects, community engagement in ongoing maintenance, and benefits for visitors and locals alike.

 

For 98 years, ASBPA and coastal communities around the United States have worked to build sustainable and resilient coastal systems, exemplified by the natural dunes highlighted in Delray Beach’s educational video. ASBPA has created a National Nourishment database tracking National-scale statistics on beach nourishment efforts over the last century (Elko et al. 2021). Updated annually, 469 communities have used renourishment as a management tool to increase the resilience of their shores.

 

Continue to enhance historic projects in your community by incorporating Blue Flag in your management toolkit. Download the Beach Criteria Quick Evaluation Tool to see how your community aligns with Blue Flag Criteria.