The monitoring requirements for successfully implementing the WFD will directly depend upon available measurement techniques of demonstrated quality, which will be able to deliver reliable data at unaffordable cost. Besides the necessary "classical" laboratory analyses, screening methodologies will play a key role in the WFD implementation, in particular for the detection of accidental pollution or the control of water bodies at risk. The WFD will represent a powerful management tool only if monitoring data are of reliable and comparable quality.
The costs of wrong decisions based on erroneous data could be tremendous, which justifies that Community efforts are made to ensure that data are produced according to a proper quality assurance regime. In the light of the above, the objectives of SWIFT-WFD should focus on the production of quality control tools for validation purposes of screening methods, an inventory of existing screening test (chemical and biological) methods through laboratory-based (tank experiments) and/or field interlaboratory studies based on a selection of reference aquatic ecosystems at European scale, and with classical laboratory-based analyses to validate their results and demonstrate their equivalence for parameters regulated both WFD. In parallel, the project should consider the development of new "low-cost", innovative, screening techniques (both for chemical and biological parameters) and their validation using the same approach (interlaboratory testing and comparison with laboratory-based methods). In addition, exchange of knowledge, transfer of technologies and training related to water monitoring will represent a key issue for ensuring the comparability of data produced by screening methods
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Funding SchemeSTREP - Specific Targeted Research Project