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ERLN/WLA Launch Session. WLA Security Summit October 23, 2009. What is the ERLN ?. Network of Laboratories Member of the Integrated Consortium of Laboratories Network (ICLN)

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ERLN/WLA Launch Session

WLA Security Summit

October 23, 2009

what is the erln
What is the ERLN ?
  • Network of Laboratories
  • Member of the Integrated Consortium of Laboratories Network (ICLN)
  • Addresses chemical, radiological, and limited biological threats during environmental responses and national significant incidents


why is erln important
Why is ERLN Important?
  • An all hazards/all environmental media laboratory network
    • Chemical Agents (including toxic industrial chemicals and chemical warfare agents)
    • Biological Agents (limited biological)
    • Radiological Agents
  • Addresses preparedness, response, remediation, and recovery activities
  • Procedures/practices that allow for day-to-day use in order to seamlessly support incidents of any scale
  • A network of laboratories with known quality
  • Provides support to the response community
  • Operates under Incident Command System (ICS) structures
  • Uses existing capabilities and/or leverages other networks’ capabilities


how does the erln work
How does the ERLN work?

Identify Analytical Services and ERLN Laboratories

Execute Project

Complete ERLN Laboratory Agreement

  • Access ERLN
  • • Identify Laboratory Resources
  • • Assess Capabilities vs. Needs

5. Ship Samples

1. Identify Problem

8. Evaluate Data

6. Monitor the Progress

9. Ensure Laboratories are Compensated Appropriately

2. Develop Project’s Measurement Quality Objectives

4. Choose ERLN Laboratory(ies)

7. Receive Data


erln tools
ERLN Tools

Laboratory Compendium

EPA’s Compendium of Environmental Testing Laboratories (Laboratory Compendium) is an online database of environmental laboratories containing each laboratory's specific capabilities to analyze chemical, biological, and radiological contaminants


The Web-based Electronic Data Review (WebEDR) application performs automated data evaluation of ERLN electronic data deliverables (EDDs)

  • Uses tests derived from the National Functional Guidelines (NFG) for data evaluation and review combined with method-defined limits to measure data
  • Serves as a review tool for EPA Data Reviewers to see how the data performed during the quality assessment
  • Performs a standardized evaluation of the overall quality of the data and provides reviewers with tools to measure the data against different measurement quality objectives (MQOs)


erln phase 1
ERLN - Phase 1


Phase 1: 18 member laboratories (March 2008)

  • 15 EPA Regional and Program Laboratories
    • Region 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 9, 10
    • NAREL
    • NEIC
    • OPPTS/OPP Environmental Chemistry Branch
    • OPPTS/OPP Microbiology Laboratory Branch
    • OPPTS/OPP Analytical Chemistry Branch
    • R&IE National Laboratory
  • 2 State Laboratories
    • FL DEP
    • VA DCLS
  • 1 Federal Laboratory
    • LLNL


erln phase 2
ERLN - Phase 2


PHASE 2 solicitation (September 2009): Open for State, Federal, local, and commercial laboratories

  • Benefits include the following:
    • Build a comprehensive list of laboratories and capabilities
    • Enhanced national capacity for environmental analyses
    • Analytical Service Requester (ASR) has more laboratory alternatives to best meet their needs
  • Anticipated Membership: Could include over 700 laboratories
    • Easily accessible information: Launch of ERLN Website (


erln wla requirements
ERLN/WLA Requirements
  • Quality Management System (QMS)
    • National Environmental Laboratory Accreditation Program (NELAP)
    • International Organization for Standardization (ISO) 17025
    • Equivalent QMS
    • Drinking Water Certification
  • Analytical capabilities/capacities for chemical, biological, and radiological contaminants
  • Agreement to use ERLN methods
  • Use reporting requirements
  • Have data and information security
  • Participate in proficiency testing program
  • Submit to audits as appropriate
  • Meet laboratory specific health and safety requirements
  • Participate in Laboratory Compendium


erln wla application process
ERLN/WLA Application Process
  • Complete ERLN/WLA application
  • Provide supporting documentation associated with laboratory’s accredited quality system
  • Complete the Lab Compendium registration process and enter or update the laboratory’s capabilities information
  • Print the Lab Compendium Submission Summary page and attach to ERLN/WLA application packet
  • Compile all required materials to comprise a complete ERLN/WLA Application Packet
  • Submit ERLN/WLA Application Packet via electronic mail or in hard copy form to EPA Office of Acquisition Management (OAM)

For more information:


erln membership process
ERLN Membership Process
  • Laboratory submits ERLN Application Packet to EPA
  • Laboratory notified of membership status via email within 60 days of receipt of application
  • Laboratory may be contacted for additional information or documentation


membership criteria
Membership Criteria
  • Notes:
  • ERLN determines “water capable” by a laboratory’s analytical capability for water or drinking water matrices.
  • CBR = Chemical, Biological, and Radiological

Determine Membership Criteria

Does the Lab

meet core ERLN membership



Does the Lab

meet CBR analysis capabilities and capacities?



Is the Lab already a member of the ICLN

Is it a Public Lab?






Water capability?


Eligible for WLA Membership

Eligible for ERLN Membership

Not Eligible for ERLN Membership


what is the wla
What is the WLA?

The Water Laboratory Alliance (WLA) provides the Water Sector with an integrated nationwide network of laboratories

The WLA is composed of drinking water, public health, environmental, and select commercial laboratories



why is the wla important
Why is the WLA Important?
  • This network of laboratories offers the capabilities and capacity to analyze water samples in the event of:
    • natural,
    • intentional, or
    • unintentional water contamination
  • Involving:
    • chemical,
    • biological, or
    • radiochemical contaminants


the wla is part of the erln
The WLA is Part of the ERLN

The WLA focuses solely on water and is an integral part of EPA’s ERLN

Drinking Water

Water Laboratory Alliance (WLA)


how does the wla work
How Does the WLA Work?
  • The Water Laboratory Alliance Response Plan (WLA-RP):
    • Establishes a comprehensive, national laboratory response approach to water contamination events
    • Provides laboratories with a structure for a systematic, coordinated response to a water contamination incident


wla rp composition
WLA-RP Composition
  • Laboratory roles and responsibilities
  • Laboratory coordination
  • Communication and logistics
  • Sample brokerage, tracking, and transport
  • Sample analyses – field screening, rapid, and confirmatory
  • QA/QC
  • Data review and validation
  • Data reporting and data storage


wla rp

Water Laboratory Alliance Response Plan (WLA-RP)

  • Includes similar elements from all 11 Regional Laboratory Response Plans (RLRPs)
  • Designed to be effective, and also reflective of the various processes that response organizations would use in supporting laboratory response to a water contamination incident
  • Tested through a multi-regional full-scale laboratory emergency management exercise (FSE)


wla resources and tools
WLA Resources and Tools
  • Water Contaminant Information Tool (WCIT)
  • National Environmental Monitoring Index – Chemical, Biological, and Radiochemical (NEMI-CBR)
  • Reimbursement Tips
  • Sampling Guidance for Unknown Contaminants in Drinking Water



Water Contaminant Information Tool (WCIT)

  • Password-protected on-line database with information for contaminants of concern that pose a serious threat if introduced into drinking water and/or wastewater
  • Provides drinking water-specific data compiled in a single location that can be accessed by the water sector to plan for and respond to drinking water contamination incidents
  • Recently added four new contaminants


nemi cbr

National Environmental Monitoring Index – Chemical, Biological, and Radiochemical (NEMI-CBR)

  • Web-based tool that displays, summarizes, and allows easy comparison of methods for contaminants of concern
  • Excellent resource for utility, emergency responder, and laboratory preparedness
  • Can be used for training, as well

as an immediate response tool

during a water security event


reimbursement tips
Reimbursement Tips
  • Reimbursement Tips
  • for Emergency Laboratory Support
  • Explores various reimbursement options/mechanisms to address laboratory support, including “fee for service” agreements
  • Identifies laboratory resources and services that may be eligible for reimbursement
  • Provides tips labs can use to develop/refine internal processes and procedures that may maximize their ability to receive reimbursement


sampling guidance
Sampling Guidance

Sampling Guidance for Unknown Contaminants in Drinking Water

  • Integrates sample collection, preservation, and transport procedures
  • Provides an example of what is required for a comprehensive sampling program
  • Supplements emergency response plans
  • Includes helpful resources, including approaches to collaborate with other agencies


wla current status
WLA Current Status

Implemented on a national level through WLA-RP

Officially launched in conjunction with ERLN Phase 2 on September 30, 2009


contact information
Contact Information


For comments and questions on the ERLN, please contact:

Schatzi Fitz-James, US EPAOffice of Emergency ManagementPhone: 202-564-2521E-Mail:

For comments and questions on the WLA, please contact:

Latisha Mapp, US EPAOffice of Ground Water and Drinking WaterPhone: 202-564-1390E-Mail: