The United States has, and continues to, have a murky relationship with asbestos. Unlike many other nations, we don’t have a ban on asbestos. Instead, we have a series of patchwork rules that work to limit the human harm with continuing to let some commercial use of asbestos continue, both in the manufacturing of asbestos products and the selling of those products in the US. As such, the US-based factories that make these products need a supply of the mined product. Let’s explore where the US gets its asbestos from. [Read more…] about Is Asbestos Still Mined or Imported into the United States?
As an employer, you want to look out for the health and welfare of your employees, especially their long-term health and even their lives. This extends beyond simply needing a healthy workforce to care for those who work for you. Having a building or property that makes your employees sick is dangerous on so many levels, from the above health conditions to issues with your bottom line, legal liability, and government investigation. Let’s learn a bit about how Sick Building Syndrome (SBS) can affect your business in offices, factories, warehouses, and more. [Read more…] about Is Your Building Making Your Employees Sick?
When we talk about asbestos regulations, the first one that is commonly brought up is the Asbestos Ban and Phase-Out-Rule, which was an EPA (the US Environmental Protection Agency) ruling targeted directly at banning asbestos. While its comprehensive ruling was short-lived, it was not the first legislation from the EPA about asbestos. The Toxic Substances Control Act of 1976 (TSCA) was a more general rule that empowered the EPA to put requirements and regulations into play when it came to certain materials and substances, including asbestos. In many ways, it provided the groundwork for asbestos control, including regulations for how asbestos contractors work. [Read more…] about Asbestos Regulations and the Toxic Substances Control Act
On June 1st, 2018, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), specifically the Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics, proposed a new rule concerning asbestos. This rule, the “Significant New Use Rule” or SNUR had two parts: first blocking some of the currently unregulated uses of asbestos, and then building a new framework for those and other new uses of asbestos to gain formal approval after testing and a safety review by the EPA. For asbestos watchdogs, this is why the SNUR is concerning, as it could potentially bring in new asbestos products into the US for use. [Read more…] about How the EPA’s Significant New Use Rule Could Affect Asbestos
Normally in this blog, we talk about asbestos on smaller scale, focusing on individual homes, businesses, and even schools. However, due to a recent accident in New York, we’re going to look at larger systems than attic insulation or popcorn ceilings. Today we’re looking at asbestos in the city infrastructure, areas where asbestos-containing materials can extend for city blocks, if not miles. Let’s go over the recent incident in New York City and the important takeaway for those responsible for city infrastructure. [Read more…] about Dealing with Asbestos in City Infrastructure
Asbestos has a lasting legacy in the United States, from health conditions that plague contractors, miners, and factory workers, to asbestos hazards in our homes, offices, and schools. Fear of asbestos comes from the fear of the health conditions it poses, and the difficulty of detecting the hazard. When it comes to diagnosing your risk of asbestos exposure, you’ve got two major sources: watching out for “sentinel diseases” that commonly are linked to asbestos or performing an inspection of suspect buildings for asbestos. [Read more…] about Is There Testing for Asbestos Exposure?