The pro-asbestos voice of the Canadian asbestos mining industry has publicly announced its decision to dissolve after almost three decades.
The Chrysotile Institute is a pro-asbestos lobby group funded by the Quebec government and it represented the international voice of the Canadian asbestos industry. It lobbied to promote the “safe” use of chrysotile asbestos, which it claims does not pose an excessive risk to workers if handled using specific controlled methods.
Asbestos in Canada
Until recently, Canada continued to be a major exporter of the mineral that is now banned in over 50 countries, and was once in fact the largest. One of the contentious issues has been the fact that, since the widespread ban on asbestos, sales were made almost exclusively to developing nations like India where regulations aren’t as stringent – and where there has been a growing outcry among activists against the use of the dangerous mineral.
As quoted in an article in the Ottawa Citizen, NDP MP Pat Martin, a former miner who has a record of voicing his criticism of the asbestos industry asserted, “It’s just another demonstration of the death rattle of the asbestos industry in this country.”
His statement comes at a time when the Canadian asbestos industry is at a complete halt, with no active mining sites, although the Quebec government has promised loan guarantees of $58 million to Montreal based Balcorp, a company in a bid to re-open the giant Jeffery Mine in Asbestos, Quebec.
As the controversy continues to make headlines, asbestos continues to be an unwanted part of many home and property owners’ lives.
Asbestos in Older Homes
If your home was built before the 1970’s, you should assume it contains asbestos in one form or another. At one time, the fireproof and nearly indestructible material was considered a “miracle” construction material.
Asbestos can show up in a wide range of areas in your home:
- Roof shingles and gutters
- Floor and ceiling tiles
- Vermiculite insulation
- Window and door sealing putty
- “Popcorn” or textured ceilings
- Textured interior house paints
It’s not always immediately apparent to the untrained eye, and may appear in a variety of forms too, from the cement mixtures commonly found in floor and ceiling tiles to the grey clumps of vermiculite insulation to plaster-based mixtures on the ceiling. If you are looking to buy an older home then do yourself a favour and include an asbestos inspection on the list of things to do. You’re ensuring both your health and the investment of your hard earned dollars in the property
The material is considered safe as long as it’s intact, but damage or deterioration can produce friable asbestos, or particles that can be inhaled – with a deadly potential. Please don’t try to handle it yourself.
Contact us for a quote – in the Toronto area contact GreenStreamEnvironmental.ca at (416) 818-9414.
Featured in Mike Holmes’ magazine, HGTV’s Income Properties, W Network’s Love It Or List It and chosen by Homestars.com as “Best Toronto Asbestos Removal Company” based on customer ratings and reviews, GreenStream Environmental Services are fully-certified, trusted and insured professionals in the removal and disposal of commercial, industrial, institutional and residential asbestos, vermiculite and mould (hazardous and non-hazardous). Providing emergency service 24/7/365 for all of Toronto and the GTA (North York, Mississauga, Markham, Brampton, Scarborough, Ajax, Oshawa, and beyond) GreenStream has over 40 combined years of experience serving clients such as the City of Toronto, the Toronto District School Board and many more. For a free estimate in Toronto, the GTA and Southern Ontario, call today at 416-818-9414. You’ll be glad you did.