Miami Beach, Florida
Water Quality in Miami Beach, Florida
Watershed: North Biscayne Bay
What is the water quality like in Miami Beach, FL?
Let’s dive deeper into what’s in Miami Beach water.
What’s in Miami Beach water?
Here are the top 5 chemical compounds in your water and what health issues they can potentially cause:
- Arsenic – Potential effect: Cancer
- Haloacetic acids – Potential effect: Cancer
- Hexavalent Chromium – Potential effect: Cancer
- Radium – Potential effect: Cancer
- Total trihalomethanes – Potential effect: Cancer
These are five of the 21 contaminants analyzed by the Environmental Working Group (ewg.org).
7 of these contaminants are rated as exceeding EWG Health Guidelines.
See the What Can You Do? section below for all of the contaminants you can filter out and how to do it.
Where does Miami Beach’s water come from?
Miami Beach’s water comes from the North Biscayne Bay watershed.
28 of the 28 EPA assessed water sources in the North Biscayne Bay watershed are in Impaired or Unknown condition. These include:
- Arch Creek – two segments
- Dania Cutoff Canal
- Desoto Lake
- Haulover Inlet
- Highlands Lake
- Intracoastal Waterway – Broward and Miami-Dade County segments
- North Beach Park Intracoastal
- Oleta River
- Port of Miami
- Sky Lake
- Snake Creek Canal – multiple segments
- South New River Canal
- Van Buren Street
- West Lake
Ideally, a water source would be rated in Good condition. The water source at Oleta State Park is in Good condition.
Whether a water source is in Impaired or Good condition refers to the quality of these uses:
- Drinking Water
- Aquatic Life
- Fish and Shellfish Consumption
Learn more from How’s My Waterway
See below for what you can do to improve Miami Beach’s water.
Conclusion – What Can You Do?
Information about water quality can be surprising.
But there’s no reason to lose hope. There are things you can do in your household as well as things you can do at a community level.
In Your Household:
- Use Berkey filters with activated carbon to filter out 17 of the 21 contaminants in your drinking water.
- To filter out 18 of the 21 contaminants, consider a Reverse Osmosis water filtration system for your house.
- These are more expensive than pitchers to purchase, but can be more effective.
- They have the benefit of filtering out heavy hitters like:
- Arsenic – health risks
- Barium – health risks in water
- Chromium (total)
- Haloacetic acids – chlorination byproduct*
- Hexavalent chromium – health effects
- Perfluoroheptanoic acid (PFHPA)
- Perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) – effects
- Selenium – health risks
- Total trihalomethanes – byproduct of chlorination*
*Chlorination is an effective method of disinfecting/treating drinking water. You can then use a water filter to reduce the effects of chlorination byproducts to get the safest, cleanest water possible.
In Your Community:
Contact your local government officials and put pressure on them to invest in cleaner waterways and upgraded city water filtration and treatment.
Go to: https://www.miamibeachfl.gov/ to find contact information for your local officials.