CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD)- Charleston Waterkeeper is keeping tabs on the changing pollution levels of the Lowcountry’s waterways this summer.

The group started it’s weekly water quality sampling in the Lowcountry in May. Samples are taken every Wednesday from various bodies of water and published on Fridays.

“We’ve found some high bacteria results in upper reaches of Shem Creek, upper reaches of James Island and Ellis Creeks. Also at Hendricks Park in North Charleston,” said Andrew Wunderly, the Executive Director of Charleston Waterkeeper.

Experts with the group measure bacteria levels because that ties directly to the number and type of pathogens that are in the water.

“That includes things like vibrio, legionnaires disease, tuberculosis, cholera, e-coli and staff. Those are some really serious pathogens that can really get you sick if you’re not careful,” said Wunderly.

When you are on the water, Charleston Waterkeeper says that disposing single use plastics properly can help lower the pollution levels.

“Limit your use of single use plastics. Almost all the trash and debris we find in local waterways is single use plastics,” said Wunderly. “Don’t bring them along in the first place. If you have to bring them along make sure you’re stowing them.”

When you’re on dry land Wunderly suggests picking up pet waste, checking your septic tank and hooking your house up to public sewer lines.

“This problem isn’t coming from somewhere else,” said Wunderly. “We need to make sure that we are being good stewards of our rivers and creeks and our harbor.”

For the week of May 15 to May 21, the upper portion of Shem Creek and Filbin Creek did not meet water quality standards.