» Publication of MCERTS Standard for Water

15 July, 2008

On 1 st July 2008 the Environment Agency published the new MCERTS standard: Performance Standard for Organisations Undertakingthe Sampling and Chemical Testing of Water. Part 1- Sampling and ChemicalTesting of untreated sewage, treated sewage effluents and trade effluents. Available via http://www.mcerts.net/

Similar to the current MCERTS schemes for air emissions and contaminated land analysis, UKAS will be assessing organisations to this MCERTS standard on behalf of the Environment Agency. Following the publication of this standard UKAS is now accepting applications from organisations wishing to be accredited to ISO/IEC 17025 for this MCERTS Standard.

Accreditation to ISO/IEC 17025 for this MCERTS standard will be a requirement in the future for those organisations conducting sampling and/or chemical testing in support of operator self monitoring (OSM) for the water utilities sector. Whilst this scheme is initially only applicable to untreated sewage, treated sewage effluents and trade effluents, there is an intention to expand the scheme into other areas of water monitoring in the future e.g. sampling and analysis of water from saline, borehole and leachate source.

In order to guarantee an assessment in adequate time for the organisation to clear any resultant actions in appropriate timescales, applications for accreditation or extension to scope must be received by UKAS by January 1st 2009.

Expansion of MCERTS into the water sector builds upon a history of successful collaboration between UKAS and the Environment Agency. Whereby accreditation is used to support the regulatory duties of the Environment Agency and lightens the regulatory burden on industry.