Wastewater Laboratory Certification Update

Beginning in 2013, Kentucky wastewater laboratories will be held to certification standards and monitored by the Department for Environmental Protection. According to statute 224.10-670, which was signed on June 8, 2011, wastewater laboratories will now function under regulation 401 KAR 5:320, which is currently being drafted. Under this regulation, laboratories will obtain interim certification during the first year, followed by certification pending on-site audits that will be performed between 2014 and 2017.

Laboratory certification is defined as “a process that provides formal recognition to the managerial and technical competence of a laboratory performing specific analyses defined by a certifying body or environmental program.” Kentucky has decided to certify wastewater labs for several reasons, including the need to comply with updated statutes, ability to protect public health more efficiently and capability to collect and ensure quality data.

The primary concern of wastewater laboratories should be the transmission of environmental data to Kentucky’s Department for Environmental Protection. Governmental agencies, including municipalities and districts, should provide data on sanitary wastewater, stormwater, drinking water and pre-treatment. Additionally, industries and privately owned utilities should provide data on any discharge that requires testing for permit limits.

Currently, the Division of Water is working to draft the final regulation, laboratory manual, procedural and reporting forms and create a wastewater lab website for updates and document downloads. If you would like more information on these proceedings, please visit the Division of Water’s webpage to find a PowerPoint on wastewater laboratory certification. In this PowerPoint, you will find additional information on the regulation process, types of wastewater analyses conducted, field parameters, requirements for field analysis and updates on the materials being created.

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