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Laboratory and Environmental Assessment Division

Laboratory and Environmental Assessment Division

DEQ's Laboratory and Environmental Assessment Division (aka LEAD or “the Lab") is located in a more than 40,000-square-foot facility in Hillsboro, Oregon. Its activities include air and water quality field monitoring, inorganic and organic analytical chemistry, data management and analysis, quality assurance and more. 

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Use this search tool to find final versions of reports, projects and more, including  LEAD's Standard Operating Procedures for laboratory methods, Quality Assurance Project Plans, Sampling and Analysis Plans for projects, and completed technical reports. ​
To find data online for water quality and air quality use:
  • ​ AQI for air quality data
  •  AWQMS for water quality data
Still can't find the document or information you need? Submit a Public Records Request​ for the information.​

The Air Quality Monitoring Section ensures Oregon meets the National Ambient Air Quality Standards for criteria pollutants as required by the Federal Clean Air Act, as well as monitors hazardous air pollutants and presents near real-time air quality data to inform public health decisions.

The Water Quality Monitoring Section identifies emerging water quality concerns, plans wastewater and industrial permit limits, assesses compliance with environmental regulations, develops effective watershed pollution reduction strategies and evaluates trends in water quality statewide.

LEAD’s Inorganic and Organic Chemistry Sections analyze samples from air, water and soil to identify sources of pollution and help determine their impacts on human and environmental health.


What’s Happening at the Lab?

​​During the most recent legislative session, LEAD received additional resources to expand its monitoring for harmful cyanobacteria blooms, formerly known as harmful algal blooms, in Oregon’s waters. Since 2019, the Lab has routinely monitored 60 drinking water sources as required by Oregon Administrative Rule OAR 333-061-0510​
With the expanded resources, the lab will begin to target additional samples in recreational waters, as well as investigate possible effects of recent wildfires on the presence of harmful cyanobacteria blooms.

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Pictured at left: ELISA instrument​; pictured at right, Lake Billy Chinook, July 2020 (Source: Oregon Health Authority)

​​LEAD recently brought EPA Method 533 online to analyze PFAS compounds in drinking water. In conjunction with the Oregon Health Authority, the Water Quality Monitoring Section sampled more than 150 drinking water sources and the Organic Section analyzed them for PFAS compounds. This is the first time the Lab has analyzed for these. 

Data from this study is found on the Oregon Health Authority's website.​​


DEQ extraction chemist performing PFAS extraction.