We Know Mesothelioma

A long time coming: The new asbestos ban

On Behalf of | Mar 25, 2024 | Asbestos |

Asbestos was once the “sweetheart” of American manufacturers. Valued for its low cost, versatility and fire-retardant properties, it was used in everything from home insulation and building materials to cigarette filters and holiday decorations.

Now a known carcinogen that is linked to multiple types of cancer, most people think that asbestos has long been banned in the United States – but that’s not exactly true. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) just took action to expand the Toxic Substances Control Act of 2016 to finally ban its last remaining legal uses in this country.

What has changed?

The new EPA ruling bans chrysotile or “white” asbestos, which is the only form of asbestos that has still been permitted for use in the United States in recent years. Asbestos is still commonly found in products as diverse as brake linings and chlorine bleach products that are used for water filtration. The changes in the law will give the eight companies that still use asbestos to produce chlorine and sodium hydroxide for water purification a five-year transition period to make necessary adjustments, while most other uses of asbestos will be banned within six months to two years.

What hasn’t changed?

Asbestos is still everywhere you look, and the new ban doesn’t do anything to change the fact that people are still going to keep getting sick from asbestos exposure. Asbestos-related diseases, like mesothelioma, take years to develop, and they cause roughly 40,000 deaths among U.S. residents each year. It will be decades before the new ban starts showing results in terms of lowering the toll on human lives.

If you have been diagnosed with mesothelioma or an asbestos-related disease, there may be compensation available to help you and your family. Legal guidance can make it easier to understand the options and initiate an effective claim.