Health Science, Environmental Science & Safe Use

Nickel Institute

Understanding Nickel’s Health and Environmental Impact for its Safe & Sustainable Use

Nickel-containing materials are very widely used today.  Our buildings, food production and handling, communications, transport, manufacturing and leisure time would not be the same without them.  As for all materials, it is important to understand their health effects, environmental impacts and how to use them safely.

Safe Use of Nickel & Nickel Compounds

 WelderNickel is an element that exists in nature mainly in the form of sulfide, oxide, and silicate minerals. It is used in many metal alloys, such as stainless steel. In direct and prolonged contact with the skin, nickel can cause dermatitis. This condition affects an estimated 10% of the population. Because nickel is a potential skin sensitiser, in the EU the nickel release is strictly controlled for articles, such as jewellery, intended to be in direct and prolonged contact with the skin.

Nickel compounds are chemical compounds containing nickel. Nickel compounds are used mainly in controlled, industrial settings where there should be no exposure to the general public and where any exposure to workers is limited through worker protection measures.

Visit the NiPERA, Inc. site to learn more.


Environmental Science

 nickel elementNickel is a naturally occurring element (the 24th most abundant element in the periodic table) and as a consequence of natural and man-made processes can be found ubiquitously in the air, soil, sediments and water. As with all metals and chemicals, excessive amounts of nickel in any of these environmental compartments can result in deleterious impacts on the quality of the environment for flora and fauna.

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Human Health Science

Nickel is a naturally occurring element (the 24th most abundant element in the periodic table) and as a consequence of natural and man-made processes nickel substances can be found ubiquitously in the air, soil, sediments, and water. Human exposure to nickel substances is therefore possible in the general population as well as in specific workplaces where nickel substances are produced or used. Risk to humans depends on the type of nickel substance, the level and route of exposure, and the toxicity endpoints of concern.

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Guide: Safe Use of Nickel in the Workplace

Safe Use of Nickel in the WorkplaceA guide for health maintenance of workers exposed to nickel, its compounds and alloys, incorporating European nickel risk assessment outcomes.

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REACH

REACH is based on the idea that industry itself is best placed to ensure that the chemicals it manufactures and puts on the market in the EU do not adversely affect human health or the environment.

Visit the Nickel Consortia website to learn more about REACH