Accreditation and Quality Assurance

, Volume 10, Issue 7, pp 327–337 | Cite as

The role of metrology in making chemistry sustainable

  • Günther Meinrath
  • Margarete Kalin
General Paper

Sustainable development is the new design of an old concept, now emerging from the acute endangering of our habitat. Coined by the Brundlandt Commission in 1987, sustainable development was defined as ‘Development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs’ (World commission on Environment and Development, Our Common Future, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 1987). It appeared on the world stage during the UNO Earth Summit in Rio, 1992. Sustainability became the key term of the ‘Agenda 21’ (United Nations Conference for Education and Development, Earth Summit, Agenda 21, The United Nations Programme of action for Sustainable Development, United Nations, New York, 1992). The ‘Agenda 21’ is adopted by 178 states, although to date not all signatories have ratified the Agenda. Sustainable solutions should aim to harmonize ecological equilibrium, economic stability, and social harmony. But in the course of the years, the interpretation of the concept became more and more complicated and its context is becoming fuzzy.


Measurement Uncertainty International Standard Organisation Metrological Traceability Metrological System International Measurement Evaluation Programme 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



The authors are indebted to P. de Bièvre for his substantial critical comments on the manuscript and P. Spitzer (PTB Braunschweig) for the discussions. We thank CAMECO (Canada) for providing the monitoring data from Rabbit Lake mine in Northern Saskatewan. We are grateful to Brenda Stanek from Northern Saskatewan Research Council (Canada) for providing the documentation an QA/QC procedures of the Inorganic Analytical Laboratory of the Saskatewan Research Council, Saskatoon.


  1. 1.
    von Carlowitz HC (1713) Sylvicultura Oeconomica. Reprint of the 1713 edition in 2000 (Irmer, Kießling, eds) Georgius Agricola library publication no. 135, Technische Universität Bergakademie, Freiberg, SachsenGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    World Commission on Environment and Development (1987) Our common future. Oxford University Press, Oxford, UKGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    United Nations Conference for Education and Development (1992) Earth summit. Agenda 21. In: The United Nations Programme of Action for Sustainable Development. United Nations, New York, USAGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Meadows DH, Meadows DL, Randers J, Behrens III WW (1972) The limits to growth. Earth Island, London, UKGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Guedj D (2000) Le mètre du monde. Editions du Seuil, Paris, FranceGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
  7. 7.
    Price G(2002) Accred Qual Assur 7:77–78CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Richter W (1999) Fresenius J Anal Chem 365:569–573CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    ISO (1995) Guide to the expression of uncertainty in measurement. 2nd edn. ISO, Geneva, CHGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    DIN V/EN V 13005 (1999) Leitfaden bei der Angabe der Unsicherheit beim Messen. Beuth Verlag, Berlin, FRGGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Meinrath G (2000) Fresen J Anal Chem 368:574–584CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Lewis D (1969) Convention: a philisophical study. MIT Press, Cambridge MassachussetsGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Price G (2001) Measurement 29:293–305CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Chalmers RA (1993) Talanta 40:121–126CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Thompson M (1994) Analyst 119:127NCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    de Bièvre P (1999) Accred Qual Assur 9/10:387Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    van Nevel L, Taylor PDP, Örnemark U, Moody JR, Heumann KG, de Bièvre P (1998) Accred Qual Assur 3:56–68CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    EURACHEM (2002) Quantifying uncertainty in analytical measurement. 2nd edn. EURACHEMGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    Spitzer P (2004) pers. comm.Google Scholar
  20. 20.
    Meinrath G (1997) Radiochim Acta 77:221–234Google Scholar
  21. 21.
    Meinrath G, Spitzer P (2002) Mikrochim Acta 135:155–168Google Scholar
  22. 22.
    Meinrath G, Nitzsche O (2000) Isotopes Environ Health Stud 36:195–210PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. 23.
    Student (Gosset W) (1908) Biometrika 6:1–25Google Scholar
  24. 24.
    Beran J (1992) Statist Rev 7:404–427Google Scholar
  25. 25.
    Dufour JM (1986) Am Stat 40:284–285CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. 26.
    Bates DM, Watts DG (1988) Nonlinear regression analysis and its applications. Wiley series in probability and mathematical statistics. J Wiley, Chichester, UKGoogle Scholar
  27. 27.
    Meinrath G (2000) Chemom Intell Lab Syst 51:175–187CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. 28.
    Meinrath G (2001) Fresenius J Anal Chem 369:690–697CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  29. 29.
    Meinrath G (2000) Anal Chim Acta 415:105–115CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. 30.
    Box MJ (1971) J Royal Stat Soc B 33:171–201Google Scholar
  31. 31.
    Meinrath G, Lis S, But S, Elbanowski M (2001) Talanta 55:371–386CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. 32.
    Meinrath G, Lis S (2001) Fresenius J Anal Chem 369:124–133CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  33. 33.
    Meinrath G, Lis S, Böhme U (2005) J Alloy Comp, in pressGoogle Scholar
  34. 34.
    Meinrath G, Merkel B, Ödegaard-Jensen A, Ekberg C (2004) Acta Hydrochim Hydrobiol 32:154–160CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. 35.
    BIPM (1999) CCQM-9;
  36. 36.
    Meinrath G, Kato Y, Kimura T, Yoshida Z (1996) Radiochim Acta 75:159–167Google Scholar
  37. 37.
    Noubactep C, Meinrath G, Dietrich P, Merkel B (2003) Environ Sci Technol37:4304–4308CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  38. 38.
    Kalin M, Wheeler WN, Meinrath G (2005) J Environ Radioact 78:151–177CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  39. 39.
    Rousseeuw PJ, van Driessen K (1999) Technometrics 41:212–223CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. 40.
    Kalin M, Meinrath G, Wheeler WN (2005) J Environ Radioact, (in press)Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.RER Consultants PassauSchiessstattweg 3aSchiessstattwegPassau
  2. 2.Institute of Inorganic ChemistryTechnische Universität Bergakademie FreibergFreibergGermany
  3. 3.Boojum Research Technologies Ltd.TorontoCD

Personalised recommendations