It’s been a long time coming, but the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and advocacy groups including the Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization (ADAO) have reached an important agreement regarding the mineral that causes mesothelioma. Activists have been pushing for a comprehensive second risk evaluation for asbestos, and are hailing the new consensus as a victory.
Agreement Includes Role of Legacy Asbestos and Diseases Beyond Asbestos
Mesothelioma victims and awareness groups had been optimistic after the passage of the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) in 2016. The law had largely been driven by concerns about asbestos, but shortly after its passage President Trump’s EPA minimized action on the carcinogen, leading to continuous legal battles. Now under the Biden administration the two sides have reached a consensus that will not only creates a date certain of December 2024 for the report’s conclusion, but importantly expands the inquiry to include all six asbestos fibers rather than solely investigating chrysotile asbestos. It will also address the mineral’s role in diseases beyond lung cancer and mesothelioma and, crucially, will look at the role of legacy asbestos.
Speaking of the consent decree, ADAO president and co-founder Linda Reinstein said, “Legacy asbestos is everywhere, and our country has not yet taken the necessary steps in evaluating the magnitude of this risk and protecting the public from harm. Trump’s EPA failed to address the deadly and often hidden threat asbestos poses in schools, factories, commercial buildings, homes, and consumer products across the United States. Now, the Biden EPA is stepping up to carry out this long overdue task.”
Asbestos Blamed for Wide Range of Illnesses, Including Malignant Mesothelioma
It has been decades since asbestos was identified as the cause of a wide range of illnesses, including asbestosis and malignant mesothelioma. Advocates have been fighting for a ban ever since, and a conclusive assessment of its risk is considered key to achieving this goal. Still, Reinstein points out that “legislation is the fastest and most effective path for putting this ban in place.”
If you or someone you love has been diagnosed with malignant mesothelioma or any other asbestos-related disease, the Patient Advocates at Mesothelioma.net have the resources you need. Contact us today at 1-800-692-8608.FREE Mesothelioma Packet