Meet one of our Asbestos Team


Introducing Emily Nixon (always with a new hair colour!) who is one of our female scientists here in the lab at Envirochem. She has a passion for drawing and painting and loves spending quality time with her friends while trying to go and see as many live bands as she possibly can.


Emily graduated from the University of Cumbria in 2017 after studying Forensic and Investigative Science. Like most fresh-faced uni grad’s, she applied for a variety of graduate jobs after leaving the North but found she was the ideal candidate for a role advertised at Envirochem that piqued her interest – and she must be having a good time as she’s been there ever since!


Her job role at Envirochem is an Asbestos Bulk Analyst which involves spending the majority of her working day analysing a variety of different samples of asbestos, identifying what elements of asbestos have been found, or not found within the sample, and understanding and demonstrating the implications this may have for the client who brought in the sample.


She said: “Working at Envirochem is great. I really love the people I work with, and the variety of work keeps the job so interesting”.


Emily makes sure every sample she looks at is properly identified and tested to make sure there are no health and safety issues surrounding the items… even if they might be slightly unusual!


She mentioned: “We recently had a gas mask that was used in the second world war brought in for testing which was definitely the most unusual sample I’ve ever looked at.


“The mask ended up testing positive for chrysotile (white asbestos that is the most commonly encountered form of asbestos, accounting for approximately 95% of the asbestos found), which many gas masks from that era have also turned up with the same result.”


It’s still quite unusual for female scientists to be thought of in relation to asbestos testing and analysis, which Emily feels very strongly about.


She said: “I could probably write an entire essay on that subject.


“I think there’s a general movement at the moment that is pushing forward the acknowledgement and the idea of women in science which is really exciting.


“I’m part of the generation where they began to push girls to pursue careers in science so it’s great to see more and more women have various roles in science based jobs.


“Saying this, there is still a long way to go before we’re in a time where men and women in science are both celebrated equally.”


Emily’s success story is hope for the future that women in STEM can make it in larger corporations such as this one and, not only that, really enjoy the work they do and have a fun time doing it.


If you’d like to get in contact with the Asbestos Testing team then contact: 01329 287 777 or

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