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How Did the EPA Act To Protect the Public from Exposure to Chrysotile Asbestos?

How Did the EPA Act To Protect the Public from Exposure to Asbestos

Asbestos, once hailed as a miracle material for its fire-resistant properties, is now recognized as a severe health hazard. Its microscopic fibers, when inhaled, can cause serious respiratory issues, including lung cancer and mesothelioma.

In response to this public health crisis, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has undertaken various measures over the years to mitigate the risks associated with asbestos exposure.

In this post, we’ll explore the actions taken by the EPA, including the 2024 Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), to safeguard the public from the dangers of asbestos. It’s essential to understand the gravity of the asbestos problem. Asbestos was widely used in construction, automotive, and manufacturing industries.

Asbestos was known to be dangerous in the 1900s.

Despite regulations and bans on certain asbestos-containing products, the material still lurks in many older buildings and products, posing a threat to workers and the general public alike.

The EPA’s Regulatory Framework

The EPA plays a pivotal role in regulating asbestos under various laws, including the aforementioned TSCA and the Clean Air Act (CAA).

These laws empower the EPA to establish rules and standards aimed at minimizing asbestos exposure and protecting public health. Over the years, the EPA has issued regulations governing the use, handling, and disposal of asbestos-containing materials.

National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAP)

To address asbestos emissions from sources such as demolition and renovation activities, the EPA established National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAP).

These standards, outlined in the CAA, regulate the emission of asbestos fibers during the demolition and renovation of buildings. By requiring proper containment and abatement practices, NESHAP aims to minimize airborne asbestos levels and protect nearby communities from exposure.

Ban on New Uses

One of the EPA’s significant actions regarding asbestos was the ban on new uses of the material.

In 1989, the EPA issued a partial ban under TSCA prohibiting most asbestos-containing products. This ban aimed to prevent the introduction of new asbestos-containing materials into the market, thereby reducing the risk of exposure to consumers and workers.

As of March 2024, the EPA has finalized the ban on chrysotile asbestos, prohibiting the ongoing use of the last type of asbestos currently being imported, processed, and distributed in the U.S. In response to this happening, our law office’s founder said as follows:

“This is great news for working families across the country. Workers and their families will no longer be needlessly endangered by chrysotile asbestos. This action is long overdue, and common sense and science have won over the corporate establishment. No longer will these large corporations be able to try to smokescreen the dangers of chrysotile asbestos by telling jurors their product is not banned.

This has been a common statement made to jurors by the corporate defense lawyers who every day in courtrooms say chrysotile asbestos is somehow the only “safe” asbestos. There is no safe asbestos, and this action by the EPA is just in line with long-established science.”Scott Frost, Frost Law Firm

Challenges and Future Directions

With the finalization of TSCA, the EPA has taken a significant step to protect the public from asbestos exposure. Through regulatory actions, risk assessment, community outreach, and education initiatives, the EPA strives to mitigate the risks associated with asbestos exposure and safeguard public health.

However, addressing the asbestos problem requires ongoing efforts, collaboration across sectors, and a commitment to prioritizing public safety.

By building on this achievement and addressing remaining challenges, the EPA can continue to make progress in combating asbestos-related risks and ensuring a safer environment for all.

Where To Turn If Exposure to Asbestos Has Made You Ill

While EPA efforts to mitigate our citizens’ exposure to asbestos are admirable, some would say that they’ve come a little too late. Countless individuals have lost their lives far too prematurely because they were unsuspectingly exposed to this toxic mineral, and others continue to suffer as they watch their health slowly deteriorate because of the same.

Our law firm represents mesothelioma patients nationwide as they pursue compensation from those who exposed them to harm. Let’s discuss your right to do the same. It may help you secure a financial recovery that will allow you to receive the best possible care as you fight this aggressive form of cancer. A consultation with one of our mesothelioma lawyers is free of charge.

Our Experience Is Personal

Scott L. Frost’s Family Experience with Lung Cancer

For most of his life, Scott L. Frost’s father, who was in the construction industry, worked with and sold products containing asbestos without knowing the materials were dangerous. He was diagnosed with lung cancer 40 years after starting his career, leading Scott’s family to fight like they had never fought before.

Pictured here with his wife of over 50 years, Scott’s father eventually succumbed to the cancer. Since then, Scott has made it his mission to do everything in his power to make sure corporations understand how dangerous asbestos is and prevent future generations from suffering as his family did, as well as support research that may lead to finding a cure.

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