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Chromium is a naturally occurring element that exists in rocks, animals, plants, and soil. Although chromium (III) is an essential nutrient that helps our body use sugar, protein and fat, the type of chromium most often used as a pesticide is Chromium (VI), which is much more toxic. Chromium (VI) is used as a pesticide to preserve wood. Chromium compounds can be deposited onto soil and water from airborne particles. Chromium in the environment can easily change from one form to another. Chromium (VI) compounds are known to cause cancer in humans who eat or breathe enough of the compound.

If you have questions about this, or any pesticide-related topic, please call NPIC at 1-800-858-7378 (8:00am - 12:00pm PST), or email us at npic@ace.orst.edu.

Additional Resources:

Return to Information on Specific Types of Wood Preservatives

Last updated December 22, 2015

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