Analytical & Advisory Services Division

Environmental Chemistry B Section

About the Section

This Section provides analytical support and advisory services to various client departments in support of the management and monitoring of air and water quality, in the implementation of various environmental programmes, and in the enforcement of pollution control and environmental protection legislation.

Responsibilities

This Section helps to implement the following Ordinances of Hong Kong:

  • Air Pollution Control Ordinance
  • Waste Disposal Ordinance
  • Water Pollution Control Ordinance

The Section also provides analytical support to the Environmental Protection Department for its environmental monitoring programmes and to other government departments in relation to the investigation of air and water quality, and to the management of waste.

Quality Assurance

About 25% of the tests on routine samples and 50% of the tests on formal samples are for quality assurance purposes.

The Section also participates in the following inter-laboratory exercises on a regular basis:

  • Acid Rain Performance Survey organised by the World Meteorological Organisation
  • National Asbestos Programme (fibre counting) organised by the Proficiency Testing Australia (PTA)
  • Bulk Asbestos Identification Programme organised by the American Industrial Hygiene Association (USA)
  • Environmental Nutrient Collaborative Trials organised by the Queensland Health Forensic and Scientific Services (Australia)
  • LEAP Scheme for Effluent, Waste Water, Contaminated Land & Hazardous Waste organised by the Central Science Laboratory (UK)
  • International Sediment Exchange for Tests on Organic Contaminants organised by the Wageningen Evaluating Programmes for Analytical Laboratories Organization (The Netherlands)
  • Water Pollution Proficiency Testing Programmes organised by the Environmental Resource Associates, Inc. (USA)

Key Instruments

The following instruments are used routinely by the Section:

  • Flow injection analyzer
  • High performance liquid chromatograph with refractive index detector
  • Ion chromatograph with UV and conductivity detectors
  • Gas chromatograph with oxygen selective flame ionisation detection system
  • Thermal-optical carbon analyzer
  • Wavelength dispersive X-ray fluorescence spectrometer
  • Oxidation stability tester
  • Fourier-transform infrared spectrometer (FTIR)
  • Coulometric Karl Fischer titration system
X-Ray Fluorescence Spectrometer

X-Ray Fluorescence Spectrometer

Targets and Key Indicators

Key Performance Measures Relating to the Statutory Testing of Environmental Samples

Targets #

# For targets where reporting time is mentioned, different samples require different analytical procedures, hence different reporting time. The quoted number of working days required represents an average of reporting time for the different types of samples and test requests within the category, while the target (in percentage) is the total compliance rate of the concerned samples and test requests within a particular category against their respective targets.

Key Indicators
Tests Performed on
Environmental Samples
2019 (Actual) 2020 (Actual) 2021 (Estimate)
Air pollution monitoring samples 65,541 60,406 63,000
Air pollution samples for litigation purposes 2,816 2,170 3,400
Field investigation (air pollution) samples 472 429 440
Water quality monitoring samples 129,685 99,055 126,000
Environmental waste monitoring samples 12,324 11,213 11,000
Environmental waste samples for
litigation purposes
307 122 320