The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Administrative Order No. 63 Series of 1998 (DAO 98-63) defines the Guidelines for the Designation of DENR Recognized Environmental Laboratories. 

The recognition scheme was conceived for the following reasons:  

  • To complement DENR analytical facilities for environmental characterization and monitoring, environmental impact assessment (EIA), pollution control and management, and research and development;
  • To involve the private sector in environmental analytical services;
  • To harmonize laboratory analytical procedures and techniques; and
  • To promote the use of QA/QC practices in environmental measurements.

Scope and Coverage

  • Laboratories that generate environmental data in connection with the EIA System, environmental monitoring, and research activities
  • Analysis of environmental samples for specific parameters
    •     27 parameters for water and wastewater
    •     19 parameters for ambient air and stationary source emission
    •     6 parameters for sediment and biota
  • Five steps, namely:
    • Level 1: Application phase;
    • Level 2: Laboratory inspection and assessment;
    • Level 3: Proficiency testing;
    • Level 4: Review and evaluation of data and information; and
    • Level 5: Issuance of the Certificate of Recognition by the DENR Secretary.
First level evaluation of application forms is undertaken by the staff of the Environmental Research and Laboratory Services Division (ERLSD), Environmental Management Bureau (EMB).

Level 2, i.e. laboratory inspection and assessment, is conducted by the Laboratory Inspection and Assessment Team (LIAT) composed of staff from the EMB central and regional laboratories together with the external pool of assessors from the Integrated Chemists of the Philippines (ICP) and the Bureau of Product Standards/Department of Trade and Industry (BPS/DTI).

Proficiency testing (PT) is conducted by the RDD/EMB staff primarily through the distribution of PT samples for analysis by the participating laboratories. Test results are statistically evaluated and such are used as one of the bases for gauging performance of laboratories for environmental analysis.

The Technical Advisory Group for Laboratory Recognition (TAG-LR), composed of the DENR Undersecretary for Environment, the EMB Director, a representative from a technical NGO, a representative from a chemical organization, and the LIAT Chairperson, is responsible for Level 4, i.e. review and evaluation of data and information.

The TAG-LR recommends to the DENR Secretary the issuance of the Certificate of Recognition. The Certificate has an effectivity period of 3 years from its issuance.