Environmental Quality Information System (EQuIS)

Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) uses a system called Environmental Quality Information System (EQuIS) by EarthSoft, Inc. to store and manage surface water and sub-surface monitoring data and associated laboratory results from sampling locations across the state.

The database currently contains monitoring data from Minnesota streams, lakes, groundwater, soil, sediment, and gas collected through MPCA programs, and selected data from the U.S. Geological Survey funded through cooperative studies with the MPCA. Other state agencies such as the Department of Agriculture and the Department of Natural Resources have also partnered with the MPCA to store and manage data for select programs.

EQuIS application and tools

EQuIS Pro, an application available for core users, is used to maintain the database and create custom reports. The agency has limited number of concurrent Pro licenses. Enterprise, an application primarily available to MPCA staff, provides an EQuIS connection useful for submitting and retrieving data. EQuIS offers a variety of software tools and standards developed to allow for fast, dependable data collection and reporting:

Data process information: Data submittals, review and reports

Data processes vary between agency programs. Please visit the links below to view data process instructions for individual programs.

EQuIS Data Gathering Engine (EDGE): Field data collection tool

EDGE is a field data gathering tool used to populate spreadsheets and generate EDDs which can then be used for EQuIS field data storage. EDGE_MN is the EDGE format that will be used in Minnesota.

The MPCA conducted an EDGE_MN pilot project in January 2014 with eight labs and contractors. After the pilot project, the EQuIS project management team evaluate the benefits of EDGE_MN and is continuing efforts to determine the amount and type of support that the MPCA will need to provide to users following a complete rollout.

The MPCA developed EDGE Standard Operating Procedures and provided training to field staff and contractors in July 2014. EDGE_MN is now rolled out to those programs ready to adapt it and use this tool.

Lab_MN: Lab data storage spreadsheet

Lab_MN is an electronic data deliverable (EDD) format developed by the MPCA and MN.IT enabling labs to submit results in an EQuIS-ready format. It incorporates EQuIS data standards and enables remote error checking prior to submitting data to the MPCA. All major labs supplying EQuIS-bound data are required to adopt this standard.

Chain of Custody (COC): Sample tracking form

COC procedures must be followed to maintain and document sample possession.  The MPCA has developed a COC that can be populated within the EDGE application or on paper. The COC provides the labs with the information necessary to work in the Lab_MN format. The COC is available within EDGE_MN and by downloading the COC template.

EQuIS Enterprise:  A data submittal portal coming soon!

EQuIS Enterprise is an existing web based processing and reporting tool used primarily by MPCA staff. In the future, a data submittal portal will be incorporated into EQuIS Enterprise to provide internal and external partners a more automated data submittal and response system.

EarthSoft’s Online Help

Links

Contacts

EQuIS Program Coordinator: David Vaaler (651-757-2400)

MPCA data coordinators