Alan Reinstein Ban Asbestos Now Act of 2017 introduced in Senate

6 Nov 2017 by under News

Environmental Protection Agency logo 100x100 Alan Reinstein Ban Asbestos Now Act of 2017 introduced in SenateThe Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced plans at the end of last month to limit its evaluation of chemicals under the , which amended the Toxic Substances Control Act, the U.S.’s primary chemical management law.

For , this means the EPA will now only be gauging the risk of the amount currently being manufactured and entering the marketplace, according to the Chicago Tribune. “That means gauging the risks from just a few hundred tons of the material imported annually while excluding almost all of the estimated 8.9 million tons of asbestos-containing products that the U.S. Geological Survey said entered the marketplace between 1970 and 2016,” the news source states.

Because the government would not be accurately assessing the risk to human health, the plan greatly hinders the promise of increased regulations or even possibly a ban that the original version intended to provide. In an effort to try to counter this, Democratic senators have introduced the Alan Reinstein Ban Asbestos Now Act of 2017.

If passed, the act would:

  • Amend TSCA to require the EPA to identify and assess known uses of and exposures to all forms of asbestos.
  • Require that, within 18 months of enactment, the EPA must impose restrictions on the use of asbestos necessary to eliminate human or environmental exposure to all forms of asbestos.
  • Within one year, disallow the manufacturing, processing, use or distribution of commerce asbestos other than described in EPA’s rule.

“ADAO is extremely thankful to Senator Merkley for championing the Alan Reinstein Ban Asbestos Now Act (ARBAN) of 2017,” said Linda Reinstein, co-founder of the Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization (ADAO) and wife of the act’s namesake. “With the increase in asbestos imports and more than 15,000 Americans dying each year from asbestos exposure, the timing of the bill is critical. Nearly forty years have passed since the EPA tried to ban asbestos with the overwhelming scientific evidence reaffirming that asbestos is a carcinogen and there is no safe or controlled use. Moving forward to ban asbestos will save dollars and lives. It’s time to make asbestos a thing of the past in this nation once and for all.”

For more information, see the ADAO’s press release.

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