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On the occasion of the World Water Day 2021, the Ministry of Environmental Protection and Natural Resources of Ukraine presented the newly renovated water quality laboratory in Vyshhorod. The upgrade of the laboratory, realised with support of the European Union and operated by the State Agency of Water Resources, marks a milestone on the road to a clean environment and clean water for everyone in Ukraine. The new laboratory capacities were provided by the European Union in the framework of the European Union Water Initiative Plus for Eastern Partnership Countries (EUWI+).

Thanks to the recent technological upgrade and renovation, the Laboratory now conducts state-of-the-art water analysis which enables detection of heavy metals, industrial chemicals and pesticides in lower concentrations and with much higher precision. It will help lower the risk for people, ecosystems, and water-using economic sectors that can suffer from toxic effects caused by anthropogenic contamination and mismanagement of water bodies.

 

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Staff at the Vyshgorod Laboratory ©EUWI+

New capacities to safeguard the environment and people’s health

The EU project team together with the State Agency of Water Resources jointly designed the laboratory facilities to meet international monitoring standards (ISO 17025:2017). This refers for instance to new pipelines for gases (helium, argon, nitrogen, etc.), electricity and establishment of a robust ventilation system and to safety precautions.

The European Union provided new analytical devices, including a water purification system, gas chromatograph with tandem mass spectrometer, atomic absorption spectrometer, atomic fluorescence spectrometer, solid phase extraction system and others. The Vyshhorod Laboratory is now equipped to better analyse the chemical status of Ukraine’s water bodies.

Further training and equipment support for monitoring surface water biology and groundwater is provided to the Ukrainian Hydro-meteorological Center (UHMC) and to Geonadra.

 

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Triple quadrupole gas chromatograph MSMS with liquid and HS autosampler ©EUWI+

 

Together with a series of expert trainings the laboratory is on the way to be internationally accredited according to ISO/EN 17025:2017. The accreditation will attest high competence and compliance with the latest international quality standards for laboratories. It also confirms that results provided by the Vyshhorod laboratory are officially valid, comparable, consistent, and trustworthy, hence policy decisions can be taken based on solid scientific evidence.

Roman Abramovsky, Minister of Environmental Protection and Nature Resources of Ukraine said: “The results of screening made for the Dnipro, Dniester and Siverskyi Donets basins have again proved the importance and need for the improvement of the standards of surface water bodies monitoring. So, with the help of the European Union, we have modernised the laboratory in Vyshhorod. It will allow analysing the typical substances of the Dnipro, Desna and Prypiat rivers, realize the impact of the neighbouring countries on shared water bodies and identify the pollutants. This will provide new opportunities to protect both human health and the environment.”

Chloe Allio, Head of the Economic cooperation, energy, infrastructure and environment section and the EU Delegation to Ukraine said: “Water quality is essential for the life and health of people, sustainable agriculture and economic growth. It has been an issue in Ukraine for many years and the EU is happy to contribute to addressing this. Knowing exactly what is in the water is the first step to making it cleaner and safer and the Vyshhorod Environmental lab will now be able to provide state of the art monitoring data.”

Alexander Zinke, EUWI+ project leader of the EU Member State Consortium highlighted the EU vision for sustainable water resource management in Ukraine and the EU Eastern Partnership region: The EUWI+ expert team welcomes the big effort of the Ministry and the State Water Agency for moving Ukraine to a European level of water monitoring. This is firstly visible in this very well renovated building. But this engagement was also shown over years by the laboratory staff and by more than 100 water experts who participated in our various trainings. So, today is also Ukraine’s Water Day!”

 

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Banner at the entrance of the Water Laboratory. 3 other laboratories exist in Ukraine ©EUWI+