The Asbestos Safety and Eradication Agency has just published an updated fact sheet about chrysotile. Recognisable due to its white colour, chrysotile is the sole form of asbestos that remains in commercial usage today. It was also the last type to remain legal in Australia until it was finally banned in 2003.
“Responsible and Safe” Usage of Chrysotile Asbestos Declared Impossible
Chrysotile has been promoted by producer countries to be safer than the other types of asbestos. Common arguments for “responsible and safe” usage revolve around the serpentine structure of chrysotile, as well as claims that the human lung can harmlessly dissolve inhaled fibers.
However, ASEA’s new fact sheet states that there is “unequivocal” scientific evidence that chrysotile poses severe health risks. “Even a basic appraisal of the most recent primary scientific literature confirms the overwhelming evidence that asbestos—including chrysotile—is a major health concern,” the fact sheet reads.
Other important sections include clarifications on ILO 162, which is often misused in defense of chrysotile asbestos.
The fact sheet ends with a call for a total global ban on all forms of asbestos, calling it “the most effective way to eliminate asbestos-related diseases.”
Read ASEA’s announcement on its new fact sheet here.
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