From the Chicago Sun-Times Southtown Star:

Illinois beaches along Lake Michigan have the sixth-worst water quality in the country, according to a study released Wednesday by the Natural Resources Defense Council.

“Testing the Waters 2011” ranked the quality of Illinois’ beach water 26th out of 31 states sampled for quality along the Great Lakes and East and West coasts.

“The news is not good,” said Karen Hobbs, the group’s senior policy analyst and a former deputy director with Chicago’s environment department.

Of a reported 61 coastal beaches and beach segments in Illinois, Cook County’s Winnetka Elder Park Beach and Winnetka Centennial Dog Beach were the most often contaminated in 2010, the report found. The worst city beaches include South Shore, Rainbow, Jackson Park (also known as 63rd Street Beach), Montrose and 31st Street. Read more.