Environmental Compliance Testing Protects Occupant Health

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Environmental Compliance Testing Protects Occupant Health

The word “compliance” may set our freedom loving hearts on high alert. Most Americans tend to push back when anyone tries to limit our personal liberties. But when it comes to our environment, compliance testing is necessary and can help expand our freedoms – Freedom from fear of drinking lead and heavy metal laden water, or inhaling silica dust, or eating food contaminated with viruses and bacteria.Compliance testing OSHA rules Silica Dust

There are many ways to measure and analyze toxins in our environment, but the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) sole mission is to protect human and environmental health. The EPA provides the strongest most actionable way to measure pollutants in our environment. The EPA gives industrial hygienists the tools to measure compounds whose concentration levels may be considered high risk. Compliance testing for Air, Water, Soil, Dust and Bulk materials is used to protect humans and other species from being exposed to certain pollutants. The EPA sets the standards for measuring the level of lead in the water or silica dust in air.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is the regulatory body created by congress in 1970 that enforces standards and determines Personal Exposure Levels (PEL’s) acceptable for contaminants that workers are exposed during their 8-hr work day.

As industrial hygienists, we’ve found some companies are proactive when it comes to the protection of workers health, but others are only prompted to investigate as a result of worker/occupant complaints and OSHA regulations.

Compliance testing is the methodology used to ensure a company is actively engaged in protecting employee health and well being. So even though compliance testing may be considered a stick and not a carrot, it serves the greater good by helping keep our most valuable resource (human resource) safe, healthy and free of illness.

OSHA is proactive in helping companies meet compliance and provides many resources such as compliance assistant specialists. 

Next Generation Compliance TestingNext generation compliance testing

The EPA states: “As our environment changes and we learn more about how pollutants affect our health the EPA is launching new systems for improving compliance testing. This next generation of compliance testing consists of five interconnected components, designed to improve the effectiveness of this program and consist of the following:

  • Design regulations and permits that are easier to implement, with a goal of improved compliance and environmental outcomes.
  • Use and promote advanced emissions/pollutant detection technology, so that regulated entities, the government, and the public can more easily see pollutant discharges, environmental conditions, and noncompliance.
  • Shift toward electronic reporting to help make environmental reporting more accurate, complete, and efficient while helping EPA and co-regulators better manage information, improve effectiveness and transparency.
  • Expand transparency by making information more accessible to the public.
  • Develop and use innovative enforcement approaches (e.g., data analytics and targeting) to achieve more widespread compliance.”

Even though the word “compliance” may trigger a push back response, it is a necessary tool to protect the health and well being of all citizens. Be proactive, not reactionary – get a free quote for compliance testing today.