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A new British Standard has been published: BS EN ISO 12404:2021 Soil and waste - Guidance on the selection and application of screening methods.

It provides guidance on the selection and application of screening methods for assessing soil quality and waste characterisation, including distribution of target parameters in soil and soil‑like material. The aim of the document is to set up criteria as to when the different kind of screening methods can be applied for the analysis of a certain parameter in soil, including soil‑like material, and waste, and which steps are required to prove their suitability.

Screening methods, which can be chemical, physical or biochemical in nature, can often be applied in a quick and simple manner. Performance of quick and simple tests can be used in the field (i.e. on‑site) and, in some cases, are also applicable for laboratory use. They can indicate the presence or absence of an analyte or provide a qualitative estimate of a parameter such as a concentration or value, or generate a semi‑quantitative result.

This British Standard is the UK implementation of EN ISO 12404:2021. It supersedes BS EN ISO 12404:2015 and BS EN 16123:2013, which are withdrawn. The UK participation in its preparation was entrusted to Technical Committee EH/4, Soil quality.

BS EN ISO 12404:2021 is available from the BSI Bookshop.