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    :: Friday, May 18, 2007 ::

    Asbestos pusher to the world - Straight Goods
    Canada's asbestos legacy kills tens of thousands at home and abroad.

    Asbestos remains one of the most glaring examples in all of occupational health in Canada of the gap between the scientific evidence of harm and the lack of 'adequate preventive measures.' The Canadian federal government continues to argue for the 'controlled use' of chrysotile asbestos.

    The concept of 'controlled use' is based on the erroneous belief that, in developing countries, there exist the legal infrastructure and the technologic capacity to reduce asbestos dust exposure to almost zero. In Canada, occupational health and safety regulations and workers' compensation generally fall under provincial jurisdiction, with each province setting its own standards and policies. For example, in the province of Ontario, the asbestos exposure standard is 0.1 fibers/cc. Even with rigid precautions and controls, such an exposure poses a lifetime toll of five excess lung cancer deaths and two asbestosis deaths per 1,000 workers. These estimates do not include any projections for mesothelioma.
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