The Mines and Geosciences Bureau Regional Office No. XIII participated in the Training Workshop on the Fundamentals of Environmental Sampling and Field Survey Management on May 4 to 6 and 10 to 11, 2022 via Microsoft Teams.

Technical personnel from the Geosciences Division and Mine Safety, Environment and Social Development Division of the MGB Central Office and Regional Offices took part in the five-day virtual training-workshop.  Similarly, technical personnel from the Metallurgical Technology Division of the MGB Central Office also attended the activity which was organized by the Lands Geological Survey Division of the MGB Central Office.

The training-workshop aimed to establish a strong foundation of skills and knowledge pertinent to Sampling and Field Survey Management; understand the principles associated with each sampling strategy; and formulate sampling framework/design to enable the preparation of the MGB Environmental Monitoring and Sampling Plan.  Dr. Dahlia C. Apodaca, RCh, PhD served as the resource speaker during the training-workshop.

The first three days of the training-workshop centered on Environmental Sampling and Analysis and the following topics were presented:

Day 1

 1. Introduction to Environmental Sampling

  • Importance of Environmental Sampling
  • Obtaining scientifically reliable and legally defensible environmental/analytical data
  • Overview of the various Philippine environmental laws and guidelines
  • Environmental sampling: Scope and W’s and How’s
  • Sampling Error vs. Analytical Error during data acquisition
  • Safety and Health issues during sampling

2. Integrating Chemistry, Biology, Hydrology and Geology in Environmental Sampling

  • Some essential Environmental Statistics
  • Concentrations and units of measurements
  • Measurements of central tendencies and dispersion
  • Probability distribution
  • Type I and II errors
  • Grubbs’ test for determining outliers
  • How many samples are required?

3. Designing a Sampling Plan

  • Planning and preparation for an environmental sampling: Setting up the Sampling and Data Quality Objectives
  • Sampling protocols: Considerations in preparing a sampling plan
  • Determining the spatial boundaries and temporal considerations
  • Environmental sampling approaches

Day 2

1. Environmental Sampling Techniques

  • General guidelines
  • Sequence of Sample Collection
  • Amount of sample to be collected
  • Sample preservation and storage
  • Selecting sampling containers
  • Sampling equipment

2. Collecting sample from various media

  • Water in the environment: Water cycle; watersheds and aquifers; sources of water and contaminants; water quality standards
  • Surface water (streams and lakes: characteristics, sampling strategies, sampling equipment and procedures)
  • Groundwater aquifers and flow; sampling procedures and equipment (pump)
  • Marine environment
  • Soil, sediment and biota
  • Field Quality Assurance/Quality Control

The second day of the training-workshop ended with breakout room sessions wherein the participants were grouped in order for them to prepare and develop a Sampling Design using the proposed Sampling Framework.

In the morning of the third day of the training-workshop, a virtual calibration of field equipment available in MGB was conducted by Dr. Apodaca and followed by a pilot testing of the Sampling Plan.  In the afternoon, each group presented their respective outputs and the speaker gave her impressions and comments on the presentations.  Some participants also shared their knowledge and skills at the training-workshop. The day ended with the finalization of the MGB Environmental Sampling and Monitoring Manual.   

Day four and five of the training-workshop revolved around the Standardization of Laboratory Procedures for Water Analysis.  In line with the requirements of ISO/IEC 17025, each MGB laboratory has an assigned analytical method for verification/validation and should prepare a method verification/validation report. As for the MGB Regional Office No. XIII Geological Laboratory Services Section, the assigned task was the verification of the standard method 2540D (Total Suspended Solids Dried at 103-1050C) of the Standard Methods for the Examination of Water and Wastewater.

The training-workshop concluded with the Closing Remarks of Ms. Jocelyn C. Villanueva, Chief of Geological Laboratory Services Section, in which the active involvement of the participants were acknowledged and appreciated.


Laboratory Technician II