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Since E. coli (which should always be italicized, although formatting limitations prevent me from italicizing this genus and species in this post's title!) has such a big scary reputation in the popular press, it’s important to remember why we measure E. coli, and know how the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) regulates E. coli in public waters. As it turns out, neither why we measure E. coli nor how we regulate it is totally straightforward.