Analysis of EU Legislated Compounds for Assessing Chemical Status: Main Challenges and Inconsistencies

  • Josep CaixachEmail author
  • Arancha Bartolomé
Part of the The Handbook of Environmental Chemistry book series (HEC, volume 42)


The list of priority substances from the EU Water Framework Directive (WFD) (2000/60/EC) was recently revised (Directive 2013/39/EU). A total of 12 new priority substances were added, and some EQS values were also modified. For different reasons (toxicity, uses, and environmental fate), the proposed EQS values are extremely low, and it is the need to reach excessively low quantification limits. This chapter considers challenges and limitations of analytical methodologies and, according to literature and the state of the art of our laboratory, explains the difficulties for routine laboratories to achieve some EQS values.


Analytical methodologies Chemical status EQS LOQs Priority substances WFD 



Annual average




Environmental quality standard


Gas chromatography-quadrupole


High performance liquid chromatography


High-resolution gas chromatography


High-resolution mass spectrometry


Isotope dilution mass spectrometry


Joint Research Center


Limit of quantification


Maximum allowable concentration


Tandem mass spectrometry






Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons


Polybrominated diphenyl ethers


Priority substances


Quality assurance


Quality control


Short-chain chlorinated paraffins


United States Environmental Protection Agency


Water Framework Directive (2000/60/EC)


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Laboratory of Mass Spectrometry, Organic PollutantsInstitute of Environmental Assessment and Water Research (IDAEA-CSIC)BarcelonaSpain

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