Canada recently decided to loan $58 million to a bankrupt mining company in order to restart asbestos exports from the Jeffrey Mine located in Asbestos, Quebec. The Jeffrey Mine is one of the world’s largest asbestos mines. Canada exported huge amounts of asbestos from it over the past century. When the mining company exhausted all of the mine’s surface supply, it went bankrupt after it was unable to find financing from the private sector. The Canada government rescued it with the $58 million loan, which will ensure that the Jeffrey Mine will be able to export asbestos to the developing world for the next 25 years.
Given the health dangers that asbestos poses, Canada’s decision to re-open the mine met with protests across the world. Protestors took to the streets in Seoul, South Korea, Brussels, Belgium, Hong Kong, and New York City. In Washington, D.C., local workers’ unions 602 and 24 joined other protestors in front of the Canadian embassy to decry the decision to re-open the long dormant asbestos mine.
As the recipient of Canada’s asbestos, the developing world will face the worst consequences. Most industrialized countries have already banned asbestos use. Five years ago, the European Union banned all use of asbestos, as well as the extraction, manufacture and processing of any asbestos products. Quebec and the rest of Canada no longer use asbestos.
Fifty-two countries in total have banned all forms of asbestos, which experts have blamed for a range of lung diseases, cancers, and health problems. If unsafe work practices have exposed you or a loved one to asbestos or other dangerous conditions, a Maryland, Virginia, or Washington, D.C. personal injury attorney can help you hold accountable those who were responsible.
Asbestos is a set of minerals that became popular in the 19th century because the minerals could absorb sound, were strong, and were resistant to heat, electrical and chemical damage. Businesses have used asbestos in everything from fireproof drywall and lawn furniture to automobile brake pads and cigarettes.
Beginning in the early 1900s, however, researchers began to notice health problems in people frequently around asbestos. Today scientists link the inhalation of asbestos fibers with lung cancer, mesothelioma, and asbestosis. As a result, most developed countries have banned the use of asbestos. Below are some interesting facts about the use of asbestos and its harms:
If a company or government negligently exposed you or a loved one to asbestos, contact a Washington, D.C., Maryland, or Virginia personal injury lawyer at Koonz, McKenney, Johnson, DePaolis & Lightfoot, L.L.P. to learn about obtaining compensation for your medical problems.