Asbestos Ban

asbesScientists at the Collegium Ramazzini in Modena, Italy have repeated calls for a total ban on all asbestos across the globe. Writing in the International Journal of Environment and Health, the Collegium points out that just 52 nations have banned asbestos but a large number still use, import and export asbestos and asbestos-containing products.
Health problems attributed to asbestos include
Asbestosis – A lung disease first found in textile workers,asbestosis is a scarring of the lung tissue from an acid produced by the body’s attempt to dissolve the fibers. The scarring may eventually become so severe that the lungs can no longer function. The latency period (meaning the time it takes for the disease to develop) is often 10–20 years.
  • Mesothelioma
  • Cancer
  • Diffuse pleural thickening
At least 125 million people around the world are today exposed to asbestos through their work with about 20 to 40% of adult men reporting past occupations that may have exposed them to the risk of mesothelioma, asbestos, and lung cancer due to asbestos
Asbestos was banned from commercial use in the 1970’s after it was declared a hazardous air pollutant. Friable asbestos products were banned immediately while non-friable products would be phased out gradually while replacements for asbestos products were developed.In 1996, the EPA lifted the total ban on asbestos allowing it to be used to a limited degree in non-friable products.[Non friable products are those which cannot be reduced to powder by hand pressure]

 

Worldwide, 60 countries (including those in the European Union) have banned the use of asbestos, in whole or in part.Some examples follow.

A nationwide ban on importing and using all forms of asbestos took effect on 31 December 2003. Reflecting the ban, the National Occupational Health and Safety Commission (NOHSC) revised asbestos-related material to promote a consistent approach to controlling exposure to workplace asbestos and to introduce best-practice health and safety measures for asbestos management, control and removal. The ban does not cover asbestos materials or products already in use at the time the ban was implemented.

Although Australia has only a third of the UK’s population, its asbestos disease fatalities approximate Britain’s of more than 3,000 people per year.

The São Paulo State law 12.684/07 prohibits the use of any product which utilizes asbestos, this legislation having been formally upheld by the Brazilian Supremo Tribunal Federal.

The only asbestos mines still operating in Canada are in the Province of Quebec. They were owned by American and British Corporations until the Quebec government expropriated (for example) Asbestos Corporation Limited in 1981 from its American parent, General Dynamics. In the early 1990s all remaining mines and mills were sold by Quebec to the private sector . Quebec exports 95 percent of its chrysotile production, mostly to Asian and other poor countries.In 1999 the government of Canada went before the World Trade Organization to challenge, unsuccessfully, the ban on asbestos in France.

France banned the use of asbestos in 1997, and the WTO upheld France’s right to the ban in 2000. In addition, France has called for a worldwide ban.

On 21 January 2011, Indian Supreme court refused to ban Asbestos in India. This judgment was passed down for case filed by a NGO on 2004. In spite of all health hazards, Asbestos continues to be used in India widely without any restriction.

Italy fully banned the use of asbestos in 1992 and set up a comprehensive plan for asbestos decontamination in industry and housing.

Japan did not fully ban asbestos until 2004, and so its government has been held responsible for related diseases.

In 1984 the import of raw amphibole (blue and brown) asbestos into New Zealand was banned. In 2002 the import of chrysotile (white) asbestos was banned.

 

 

Check this site for asbestos class action lawsuit

 

Reference:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Asbestos_and_the_law

Article publié pour la première fois le 02/04/2013

Related Posts:

  • No Related Posts