Senate Unanimously Passes Total Asbestos Ban

A complete U.S. ban on production, manufacture, and distribution of asbestos is suddenly within sight, after the U.S. Senate's unanimous approval Oct. 4 of S. 742, the Ban Asbestos in America Act of 2007. Senators speaking before the vote warmly congratulated Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., for more than six years of dogged work on the issue. She started, Murray recalled Oct. 4, with a promise to two men dying of mesothelioma -- Fred Biekkola and Brian Harvey. "I told them I would stand with them every step of the way until this bill was passed, sent to the president, and signed into law," Murray said. "I lost both Brian and Fred, because they died of mesothelioma. But I have met many others along the way, too. . . . Because of the Freds and the Brians and the many other people I have met, and my great colleagues on the floor of the Senate, today we are making a difference. We are well on our way to banning the use of asbestos."

S. 742 would amend the Toxic Substances Control Act; establish a national mesothelioma registry within one year that is set up by CDC, NIOSH, and ATSDR; and start a public information campaign about the hazards of asbestos-containing materials. Forty countries worldwide have similar bans in place.

Sen. Johnny Isakson, R-Ga., was a key ally for Murray. "The EPA initially proposed a ban of most asbestos-containing materials in the late 1970s," he said in an Oct. 4 speech. "The rule was not finalized until 1989. Only 2 years later, however, the Fifth Circuit struck down the rule, finding that the EPA had 'failed to muster substantial evidence' in support of the ban. Today, the U.S. consumes about 2,000 tons of asbestos yearly, down from almost 800,000 tons consumed in the mid-1970s. Our bill will establish a permanent ban of asbestos that will be enforced by the Environmental Protection Agency. The bill also mandates the most thorough Government study of asbestos to date. The study will ensure the best experts from the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health, the National Academy of Sciences, and the EPA examine all aspects of asbestos, including its natural properties, its geographic distribution across the United States, and its effects on the human body."

Download Center

HTML - No Current Item Deck
  • Get the Ultimate Guide to OSHA Recordkeeping

    OSHA’s Form 300A posting deadline is February 1! Are you prepared? To help answer your key recordkeeping questions, IndustrySafe put together this guide with critical compliance information.

  • Steps to Conduct a JSA

    We've put together a comprehensive step-by-step guide to help you perform a job safety analysis (JSA), which includes a pre-built, JSA checklist and template, steps of a JSA, list of potential job hazards, and an overview of hazard control hierarchy.

  • Everything You Need to Know about Incident investigations

    Need some tips for conducting an incident investigation at work after there’s been an occupational injury or illness, or maybe even a near miss? This guide presents a comprehensive overview of methods of performing incident investigations to lead you through your next steps.

  • Free Safety Management Software Demo

    IndustrySafe Safety Management Software helps organizations to improve safety by providing a comprehensive toolset of software modules to help businesses identify trouble spots; reduce claims, lost days, OSHA fines; and more.

  • Industry Safe
Bulwark CP

OH&S Digital Edition

  • OHS Magazine Digital Edition - October 2020

    October 2020

    Featuring:

    • FACILITY SECURITY
      EHS Compliance: Make it Personal
    • FOOT PROTECTION
      Choosing the Right Safety Shoe for Your Industry
    • HAND PROTECTION
      A Requirements Checklists for Work Safety Gloves
    • COVID-19 MANAGEMENT
      Contemporary Issues in HSE Management
    View This Issue