(Koror, February 04, 2023) – The US Freely Associated States Laboratory Certification Program has certified the new laboratory technician for Laboratory of the Palau Environmental Quality Protection Board for analysis of drinking water under the Colilert® method and marine waters under the Enterolert™ method. This certification is valid for 2 years, effective immediately through July 2024. During this certification Darwin Florencio, was certified as a laboratory technician.
The laboratory technician certifications were provided by Ms Edna L. Buchan of Nimbus Environmental Services. Ms Buchan is a US EPA Laboratory Certification Officer, under contract with US EPA with funding provided by the US Department of the Interior. Mr. John McCarroll and Mr. Carl Goldstein of the US EPA Pacific Islands Office (Region 9, San Francisco) continue to be strong proponents of the FAS Lab Certification Program.
Certifications are necessary to ensure that the EQPB Lab produces scientifically valid and legally defensible data, and that lab staff are qualified to analyze water samples for bacterial contamination. Protection of public health through monitoring for safe drinking water and recreational waters is a priority mandate for Palau EQPB.
A laboratory receives certification when it meets specific performance criteria, determined through an on-site evaluation at least every two years. Criteria include standards for record-keeping and reporting, equipment maintenance and calibration, and maintaining adequate stock of reagents and other supplies. To receive certification a laboratory must also have qualified technicians on staff. Technicians receive certification when they successfully pass a written exam and a practical demonstration of proficiency.
Certificate was presented to the Palau EQPB Laboratory staff at an award ceremony held at the Palau EQPB office on Monday February 06, 2023.
Ms. Buchan recognized the accomplishments of the EQPB lab and new staff in being certified for both drinking water and marine water. “Acting Chief Executive Officer Michael Blesam and his staff are very deserving of this certification. I am extremely pleased to find that Palau EQPB continues to uphold the highest standards of laboratory practice since our previous audit in 2022. The EQPB laboratory is an exemplary lab of Micronesia, and its operations and staff are models we expect other labs in the region will follow. In addition, Palau EQPB and Laboratory Manager and his staff are major partners in the FAS Laboratory Certification Program. They provide training for analysts.