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Environmental Testing Laboratory

Category Press Release
Publish Date 10/30/2018
Author Paul Cochrane
Title Protecting California’s Workers from Exposure Risks to Cobalt and other Potentially Hazardous Chemical Elements
Introduction LA Testing provides analytical services and sampling supplies to identify environmental and occupational sources of cobalt and cobalt compounds.

Huntington Beach, CA, October 30th, 2018

In 2016, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services released the 14th Report on Carcinogens (RoC) prepared by the National Toxicology Program (NTP). Added to that edition were cobalt and some cobalt compounds which were listed as “reasonably anticipated to be a known carcinogen.”

Cobalt is a naturally occurring metallic element that can be present in different forms. It is mixed with other metals to make cemented carbides, bonded diamonds and alloys that can be used to make durable industrial and military products. Rechargeable batteries, some surgical orthopedic joint implants, and pigments used to make a rich blue color for glass, tiles and ceramics are some of the products made with cobalt. A number of green energy products, such as solar panels, car batteries for electric vehicles, and wind and gas turbines are made with some forms of cobalt.

“Back in 1992, the state of California designated cobalt metal powder and cobalt [II] oxide as known to cause cancer under Proposition 65,” said Michael Chapman, Laboratory Manager of LA Testing’s Huntington Beach facility. “Cobalt sulfate and cobalt sulfate heptahydrate were added to the list in later years.”

According to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), “In the United States, more than a million workers are potentially exposed to cobalt and its compounds, with the greatest exposure in mining processes, cemented tungsten-carbide industry, cobalt powder industry and alloy production industry. In addition, workers are exposed to cobalt in the production, processing and use of hard metal; and the grinding and sharpening of steel tools with hard metal abrasives.”

Helping to protect workers in California from the hazards associated with exposure to cobalt and cobalt compounds are the industrial hygiene and environmental professionals at LA Testing. They offer laboratory services to identify environmental and occupational exposure risks to cobalt and many other chemical elements and compounds. These services are also instrumental for keeping companies in regulatory compliance. LA Testing even provides respirators and a wide range of other personal protective equipment (PPE) to mitigate exposure risks. They have also sponsored an educational video about cobalt and cobalt compound exposure concerns that can be seen at:

To learn more about this or other occupational, environmental, air quality, health and safety testing services, please visit, email or call (800) 755-1794.

About LA Testing
LA Testing is California’s leading laboratory for indoor air quality testing of asbestos, mold, lead, VOCs, formaldehyde, soot, char, ash and smoke damage, particulates and other chemicals.  In addition, LA Testing offers a full range of air sampling and investigative equipment to professionals and the general public. LA Testing maintains an extensive list of accreditations including: AIHA LAP LLC., AIHA ELLAP, AIHA EMLAP and AIHA IHLAP, CDC Elite, NVLAP, State of California, State of Hawaii Department of Health and other states.  LA Testing, along with the EMSL Analytical, Inc. network, has multiple laboratories throughout California including South Pasadena, Huntington Beach, San Leandro and San Diego.

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