The area was tested in previous years, reaching the minimum acceptable ‘sufficient’ standard in 2015 and 2016. But the government has said that it was not possible to test water in the bay this year because of a resource shortage, as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. This week, the JEP asked to speak to a member of the department responsible for the sampling programme but was instead provided with a quote.
The statement said: ‘The quality of sea water around Jersey’s coast is important for bathing and aquaculture. The list of bays which are tested is comprehensive and fully compliant with the requirements of the Bathing Water Directive set out by the European Directive and the World Health Organisation.
‘As we return to business as usual, additional bays may be added to the list. In 2019 Bonne Nuit was voluntarily added to the sampling programme but, as a result of officers being redeployed in response to the Covid-19 pandemic, it was not tested this year.
‘This has not compromised the work on testing our waters, but resources have had to be managed appropriately.’
According to the government website, Bouley Bay, Grève de Lecq, St Brelade, La Haule, Victoria Marine Lake and Grouville are sampled 20 times during the bathing season, which this year runs from 11 May to 14 September. Plémont, the Watersplash, Le Braye, Beauport, Portelet, Havre des Pas, Green Island and Archirondel are sampled ten times during the bathing season, as these sites have consistently excellent water quality.
According to the latest results, which were formed based on samples taken on 2 September, all bays apart from two achieved ‘excellent water quality’ status. St Brelade’s Bay achieved ‘good’, whereas the Victoria Marine Lake at West Park was classed as having ‘poor’ quality water.
According to a government document from 2013, the Bonne Nuit ultra-violet sewage treatment works serves 14 houses, 27 apartments, a hotel, a café and the bay’s public toilets. Treated effluent is pumped out of a pipeline which lies below the low-water line.
It added that pumping sewage from Bonne Nuit to the primary Bellozanne treatment works was not economically viable.