Introduction and Objectives of reference laboratory

This component is designed to support the monitoring components of the project and to be instrumental in recording the degree of reliability and comparability of data on the environment.

The main activities performed by the Reference Laboratories to record comparability are proficiency tests for laboratory measurements and verification of calibration for automatic monitors. These activities will identify errors in the procedures used and thereby give the monitoring institutions the opportunity to rectify such errors.

The Reference Laboratories are furthermore trained to assess the quality system and technical procedures at the monitoring institutions on behalf of EEAA. EEAA will be provided with information showing if the institutions’ approach to their work is such that reliable data can be expected.

In addition the Reference Laboratories are responsible for training staff at the monitoring institutions in quality control and other operational activities within quality assurance thereby disseminating knowledge on quality assurance throughout the monitoring network.

These tasks are performed by two reference laboratories: the Reference Laboratory - Water and the Reference Laboratory - Air. The Reference Laboratory - Water covers all parameters related to the EIMP Coastal Water Monitoring Program and laboratory measurements related to the EIMP Air Monitoring Program. The Reference Laboratory - Air covers work related to automatic monitors and samplers under the EIMP Air Monitoring Program.

The activities of both reference laboratories are: