What it contains

The “Beach Report: long-term condition report” shows water quality at 40 sites across Port Phillip Bay (PBB) and the Yarra River. The report shows water quality from over a five-year period and notes trends in the results.


EPA tests water samples collected at these locations for bacteria. Enterococci is the best way to measure pollution from faecal sources at our beaches. We also test freshwater for E. coli at four locations along the Yarra River with Melbourne Water.


Almost two-thirds of PBB testing sites met long-term standards for primary contact recreation during this period. This means a person can swim on most days in summer and can swallow water with a very low risk of getting sick. All PPB beaches were suitable for secondary contact recreation. This means activities where you’re unlikely to swim in or swallow water. 


Yarra River testing points were suitable for secondary contact. They did not meet long-term standards for primary contact recreation.

EPA continues to work with Melbourne Water to better understand the sources of faecal pollution in these areas.

Target audience
General public
Publication number
Number of pages
Release date
1 March 2023
Reading level
Document version

Reviewed 28 March 2023