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Looking For The Cleanest Beaches In California? Try Malibu

A roadside sign reads Malibu, 27 miles of scenic beauty, emblazoned on a blue and green background depicting the ocean and the shore. Two circular signs are posted below the main sign, one reading Malibu Green Machine and the other a yellow and blue sign for Rotary International.
Malibu is home to some of the most coveted beaches in the world.
(Joe Seer
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If you're looking for beaches with the cleanest ocean water this summer, head over to Malibu.

The environmental group Heal the Bay has come out with its annual report card ranking the best and worst California beaches for their water quality, and Malibu area beaches like Puerco and Nicholas Beach got A-plus marks year-round.

The group measures this by looking at (brace yourself!) levels of fecal bacteria, which makes its way to the ocean from street run off, along with sewage and storm drains.

"We're happy to see that because a few years ago, a lot of beaches on that stretch of coastline really suffered from poor water quality— we think as a result of the Woolsey fire," said Luke Ginger, water quality scientist with Heal the Bay. "So we think after that wildfire, more bacteria pollution was ending up in the ocean."

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Only one L.A. County beach was at the bottom of Heal the Bay's rankings: that's Mother's Beach in Marina Del Rey. That's because it's enclosed by the marina, and there's no current that can flush polluted water away from shore.