About the Bay

The Santa Monica Bay is the centerpiece of Los Angeles’ beach culture, and the geographic center of the LA region.  Stretching from Malibu to Palos Verdes, the bay is where millions of Angelenos relax and work. Because of their economic, ecological and recreational value, our waterways and the ocean are critical resources worth protecting. 

  • Santa Monica Bay beaches average 45 million visits per year
  • The Bay generates more than $1 billion in visitor spending annually.
  • Tourism accounts for more than 500,000 jobs in the greater L.A. area

The population of Los Angeles has skyrocketed in the past 100 years, and it's putting a lot of pressure on our environment. In the mid 1980s, improperly treated sewage led to dead zones in the Bay and harmful water quality. Thanks to the efforts of Heal the Bay and its supporters, the EPA mandated stricter sewage treatment processes, resulting in greatly improved water quality.

Despite the amazing gains, your Bay faces ongoing challenges, from marine debris to overfishing. Our ocean faces many challenges, and Heal the Bay works every day on a number of different issues. By addressing the many facets of ocean pollution, we make real and positive change possible.  Many of these initiatives are made possible through reasonable legislation and regulations. Visit our Action Alert page to see how you can support that legislation and help make a difference.  You can also review a list of our recent legislation.

Today's blogger is Katherine Pease, Heal the Bay's Watershed Scientist  At Heal the Bay, May and June mean that it's time for the Stream Team to conduct our yearly biological assessments of streams in the Malibu Creek Watershed.
Stream Team Arroyo Sequit Leo Carrillo Malibu Creek California newts
California created another group of ocean protection zones on Wednesday, putting the finishing touches on a vast network of protected areas that dot the sea from Mexico to the Oregon border. The Fish & Game Commission voted unanimously to approve…
California ocean protection Mexico Oregon Fish & Game commission
June 7, 2012 Today's guest blogger is Sarah Sikich, Heal the Bay's coastal resources director
Cobalt Forest MPA Melvin Moncrieff Marine Protected Area Oceans Garibaldi
Today’s guest blogger is Dana Roeber Murray, a marine and coastal scientist with Heal the Bay. A little more than a year after the devastating earthquake and tsunami in Japan, Heal the Bay is conducting our first tsunami debris monitoring of Los An…
Japan tsunami debris NOAA Heal the Bay marine debris Los Angeles County cleanup
At a time when most schools are focused on fundraising to support their own libraries and arts programs, one local school decided to share some of the money their families raised at a beach cleanup event to help further Heal the Bay’s mission. …
Heal the Bay Mariposa Elementary beach cleanup donation Agoura Hills education
What better way to kick off a summer spent at the shore than with some family-friendly, crowd-pleasing ocean sport competition? In the water on June 9, the Santa Monica Pier Paddleboard Race & Ocean Festival will feature SUP, paddleboard, ocean s…
June 9 ocean sport paddleboard surf swim Santa Monica pier
California beachgoers can head to the shore with little anxiety this summer, as their beaches are generally very clean, according to Heal the Bay’s 2012 Beach Report Card®. In fact, 407 of the 441 beaches monitored throughout California’s summer…
Beach Report Card Annual Report 2012 Redondo Beach Photo - Joy Aoki
On May 17 Heal the Bay hosted nearly 1,000 of our closest friends and biggest supporters at our annual Bring Back the Beach gala. Themed “Sea of Love,” this year’s sold-out event celebrated eco-couple Danny Moder and Julia Roberts, as well as A…
Heal the Bay honored eco couple Danny Moder and Julia Roberts on May 17
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