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Vapor Intrusion Testing

Category Press Release
Publish Date 1/11/2024
Author Paul Cochrane
Title Vapor Intrusion Testing Resources to Protect Building Occupants
Introduction EMSL Analytical provides laboratory testing services and sampling supplies to identify chemical exposure risks due to vapor intrusion and other causes in all types of buildings.

Cinnaminson, New Jersey, January 11, 2024

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) describes vapor intrusion as occurring when there is a migration of vapor-forming chemicals from any subsurface source into an overlying building. This subsurface source is often contaminated groundwater or soil.

These vapor-forming chemicals can cause indoor air quality (IAQ) problems and pose a health concern for building occupants. Examples of vapor-forming chemicals listed by EPA include:

  • Volatile organic compounds (VOCs), such as trichloroethylene and benzene
  • Select semi-volatile organic compounds (SVOCs), such as naphthalene
  • Elemental mercury
  • Some polychlorinated biphenyls and pesticides


The agency goes on to warn that in extreme cases, the vapors may accumulate in dwellings or occupied buildings to levels that may pose:

  • Near-term safety hazards (e.g., explosion)
  • Acute health effects


“In homes and buildings with lower concentrations of vapor-forming chemicals due to vapor intrusion, EPA reports the main concern is whether the chemicals may pose an unacceptable risk of health effects due to long-term exposure to these lower levels,” said Joe Frasca, Senior Vice President of Marketing at EMSL Analytical, Inc. “They also caution that a complicating factor in evaluating the potential chronic risk from vapor intrusion is the potential presence of some of the same chemicals from emission sources in the building. Examples listed include household solvents, gasoline and cleaners that may pose, separately or in combination with vapor intrusion, a significant human health risk.”

To address vapor intrusion concerns, EMSL Analytical offers comprehensive laboratory testing services and sampling supplies from their facilities located across North America. EMSL has even sponsored an educational video about vapor intrusion and indoor air quality that can be seen at: https://youtu.be/kkxtq1TfbnQ 

To learn more about vapor intrusion and indoor air quality testing services and sampling resources, please visit www.EMSL.com, call (800) 220-3675 or email info@EMSL.com

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 www.EMSL.com for a complete listing of accreditations. In addition, EMSL carries a wide range of Sampling Equipment and Investigative Products for environmental professionals.


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