Customer Service

 Customer Survey

LABConnect™ - Online Results & More

Environmental Testing Services

Category Press Release
Publish Date 6/2/2023
Author Paul Cochrane
Title EPA Issues Three Proposals to Reduce Ethylene Oxide Exposure Risks
Introduction EMSL Analytical provides environmental and industrial hygiene testing services to identify ethylene oxide and a wide range of other chemicals to protect workers, communities and to help keep businesses in regulatory compliance.

Cinnaminson, New Jersey, June 2, 2023

In April, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced three new proposals that it claims will reduce risk in communities and for workers due to the use of a chemical known as ethylene oxide (EtO).

EtO is described by EPA as a colorless gas used to make other chemicals that are used in making a range of products, including antifreeze, textiles, plastics, detergents and adhesives. It is also used as a fumigant in various agricultural products and to sterilize equipment and plastic devices that cannot be sterilized by steam, such as medical equipment. However, the agency warns that EtO use can contribute to an increased risk of cancer for people who are regularly exposed to it over long periods of time. 

EPA’s three proposals include:

  1. Reducing EtO Emissions from Chemical Plants: EPA announced a proposal under the Clean Air Act that would update several rules that apply to plants that make synthetic organic chemicals and plants that make a variety of polymers and resins. One of those rules is “the HON,” which is shorthand for Hazardous Organic NESHAP. EPA’s proposal would reduce 6,053 tons of air toxics per year, including EtO, chloroprene, hexane, benzene, methanol, 1,3-butadiene, and vinyl acetate, among others. Once the final rule is fully implemented, it would reduce 58 tons of EtO per year.
  2. Reducing EtO Emissions from Commercial Sterilizers: EPA proposed to strengthen emission standards for the 86 commercial sterilizers that are currently operating across the country as well as for new sterilizers. These requirements, if finalized, will reduce the amount of EtO that comes out of commercial sterilizers by 80 percent and will reduce risk in nearby communities to levels below the Clean Air Act benchmark for elevated risk.
  3. Reducing Risk to Workers in the Sterilization Industry: EPA proposed a broad set of new protections under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act that will reduce risk for all workers who use EtO to sterilize things and for others who work, live or go to school near sterilization facilities. 

“The Food and Drug Administration reports that ethylene oxide is used to treat approximately 50 percent of sterile medical devices, which is about 20 billion medical devices annually, and for some devices, it is the only safe and effective sterilization method currently available,” said Joe Frasca, Senior Vice President of Marketing at EMSL Analytical, Inc. “To help safeguard workers and communities, and to help companies comply with existing and future health and safety regulations, EMSL Analytical’s network of environmental and industrial hygiene laboratories offer testing services and sampling supplies to detect exposure risks to ethylene oxide and many other industrial chemicals.”

Several years ago, EMSL sponsored an educational video about ethylene oxide and occupational exposure concerns that can still be seen at: 

To learn more about EtO or other industrial hygiene, environmental, health and safety testing services, please visit, call (800) 220-3675 or email

About EMSL Analytical, Inc.

EMSL Analytical is one of the leading testing laboratories with locations throughout the United States and Canada. EMSL is a nationally recognized and locally focused provider specializing in fast laboratory results for mold, bacteria, Legionella, USP <797>, pathogens, asbestos, lead, soot, char & ash from fires, VOCs, odors, radon, formaldehyde, indoor air quality, microbiology, environmental, industrial hygiene, radiological, food, beverage & consumer products and material testing services for the identification of unknown substances. EMSL services both professionals and the general public. EMSL maintains an extensive list of accreditations from leading organizations as well as state and federal regulating bodies including, but not limited to A2LA, AIHA LAP, LLC. (AIHA EMLAP, AIHA IHLAP, AIHA ELLAP), NVLAP, CDC ELITE, CPSC, CA ELAP, NY ELAP, TX DOH, NJDEP and multiple other state accrediting agencies. Please visit our website at for a complete listing of accreditations. In addition, EMSL carries a wide range of Sampling Equipment and Investigative Products for environmental professionals.

Atlanta, GA (LAB 07) - NVLAP Lab Code 101048-1Baton Rouge, LA (LAB 25) - NVLAP Lab Code 200375-0Beltsville, MD (LAB 19) - NVLAP Lab Code 200293-0Boston, MA (LAB 13) - NVLAP Lab Code 101147-0Buffalo, NY (LAB 14) - NVLAP Lab Code 200056-0Carle Place, NY (LAB 06) - NVLAP Lab Code 101048-10Charlotte, NC (LAB 41) - NVLAP Lab Code 200841-0Chicago, IL (LAB 26) - NVLAP Lab Code 200399-0Cinnaminson, NJ (LAB List in Description) - NVLAP Lab Code 101048-0Dallas, TX (LAB 11) - NVLAP Lab Code 600111-0Denver, CO (LAB 22) - NVLAP Lab Code 200828-0EMSL Canada - Calgary, AB (LAB 65) - NVLAP Lab Code 500100-0EMSL Canada - Edmonton, AB (LAB 50) - NVLAP Lab Code 600321-0EMSL Canada - Markham, ON (LAB 66) - NVLAP Lab Code 600317-0EMSL Canada - Montreal, QC (LAB 68) - NVLAP Lab Code 201052-0EMSL Canada - Ottawa, ON (LAB 67) - NVLAP Lab Code 201040-0EMSL Canada - Toronto, ON (LAB 55) - NVLAP Lab Code 200877-0EMSL Canada - Vancouver, BC (LAB 69) - NVLAP Lab Code 201068-0Fort Lauderdale, FL (LAB 56) - NVLAP Lab Code 500085-0Houston, TX (LAB 15) - NVLAP Lab Code 102106-0Huntington Beach, CA (LAB 33) - NVLAP Lab Code 101384-0Indianapolis, IN (LAB 16) - NVLAP Lab Code 200188-0Kernersville, NC (LAB 02) - NVLAP Lab Code 102104-0Las Vegas, NV (LAB 31) - NVLAP Lab Code 600140-0Long Island City, NY (LAB 03) - NVLAP Lab Code 101048-9Meriden, CT (LAB 24) - NVLAP Lab Code 200700-0Miami, FL (LAB 17) - NVLAP Lab Code 200204-0Minneapolis, MN (LAB 35) - NVLAP Lab Code 200019-0Ontario, California (San Bernadino County / Inland Empire) (LAB 71) - NVLAP Lab Code 600239-0Orlando, FL (LAB 34) - NVLAP Lab Code 101151-0Phoenix, AZ (LAB 12) - NVLAP Lab Code 200811-0Piscataway, NJ (LAB 05) - NVLAP Lab Code 101048-2Plymouth Meeting, PA (LAB 18) - NVLAP Lab Code 200699-0Raleigh, NC (LAB 29) - NVLAP Lab Code 200671-0Rochester, NY (LAB 53) - NVLAP Lab Code 600183-0San Diego, CA (LAB 43) - NVLAP Lab Code 200855-0San Leandro, CA (LAB 09) - NVLAP Lab Code 101048-3Santa Clara, CA (LAB 47) - NVLAP Lab Code 600318-0Seattle, WA (LAB 51) - NVLAP Lab Code 200613-0South Pasadena, CA (LAB 32) - NVLAP Lab Code 200232-0South Portland, ME (LAB 62) - NVLAP Lab Code 500094-0St. Louis, MO (LAB 39) - NVLAP Lab Code 200742-0Syracuse, NY (LAB 73) - NVLAP Lab Code 600283-0Tampa, FL (LAB 93) - NVLAP Lab Code 600215-0
Sorry, this function is disabled.