Best Practices for Submitting Nutrient Data to the Water Quality eXchange (WQX)

Data Management and Review
Oral Presentation

Prepared by L. Shumway
USEPA, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave NW, Washington, DC, 20004, United States


Contact Information: shumway.laura@epa.gov; 202-566-2514


ABSTRACT

The Water Quality eXchange (WQX) Nutrient Best Practices Guide was created to guide organizations in submitting nutrient data to WQX and to address other metadata issues with data to support the submission of nutrient information. This guide was also created to make submitting nutrient datasets more user-friendly, promote consistency when submitting data and thus remove confusion and ambiguity for secondary data users. It was produced through a WQX Nutrient QA Workgroup comprised of representatives from EPA, USGS and several States which were also members of the STORET/WQX Users Group. The QA Workgroup addressed six areas of concern with respect to documenting nutrient data to improve its value for secondary users. These include (1) duplicate monitoring locations, (2) addressing duplicate or ambiguous nutrient characteristic names (synonyms) in WQX (3), how to correctly use the WQX elements “method speciation” and “sample fraction”, (4) correctly submitting values above or below detection limits, (5) National analytical methods, and (6) how to submit a complete and unambiguous nutrient result.