Canada Finally Stops Defending Asbestos Mining

After several decades of criticism from the international community, the Canadian government is finally stopping its unconscionable defense of the asbestos mining industry. Long an exporter of asbestos, the mineral responsible for diseases like asbestosis and mesothelioma, Canada is undergoing a change of heart as the reins of government are shifted to the Parti Québécois, led by Canada’s first female Premier, Pauline Marois.

Marois Behind New Direction on Asbestos

During her campaign, Premier Marois promised to revoke a government loan that would have allowed the Jeffrey asbestos mine in Asbestos, Quebec to restart activities. Instead of the government loan going towards dangerous asbestos mining, the government will now give communities formerly dependent on asbestos mining up to $50 million to encourage the development of other, safer industries. Quebec was the last province in Canada still exporting asbestos to other countries.

Canada’s Decision Potentially Reduces International Asbestos Use

Families of victims of mesothelioma and other anti-asbestos activists are pleased with Quebec’s announcement. Not only does the decision mean that fewer Canadian workers and their families will be exposed to asbestos, but workers internationally will also benefit from less asbestos exposure. This is because Canada has frequently blocked attempts to add chrysotile asbestos to the Rotterdam Convention, a U.N. treaty that tracks hazardous substances. With its new posture on asbestos mining, it’s unlikely that Canada will continue to try to prevent the addition of the known dangerous substance asbestos to the list.

However, while Canada is publicly changing their stance on asbestos, there are still other countries in the world that allow asbestos export and its use in manufacturing, ignoring the proven fact that asbestos is hazardous to human health and the only cause of mesothelioma, a devastating and terminal disease. The law offices of Clapper, Patti, Schweizer, and Mason fight against the irresponsible use of asbestos by representing victims of asbestos exposure and their families. To learn more about what we do and how we may be able to help you, call us toll free at 1-800-440-4262.

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