Feds To Announce Asbestos Ban

It looks like the federal government will finally answer the growing chorus of voices who are calling on Justin Trudeau to keep his promise of enacting an asbestos ban. Even though Canada no longer exports asbestos, imports of certain construction and automotive products containing asbestos are still allowed.

Bill To Ban Asbestos In Canada
Along with a number of municipalities across the country who are officially joining the cause, a private member’s bill has been introduced into parliament.

Liberal MP Robert-Falcon Ouellette introduced the bill that looks to completely prohibit asbestos – a known and fully documented health risk that is the biggest workplace killer in our country. Ouellette says he hopes the move will put even more pressure on the Liberal government to make the move official. He spoke to the Globe and Mail in an interview.

“It’s destroyed too many lives. The economic benefits do not outweigh the health negatives and health concerns and destructive nature of this product. And I still can’t believe that we’re using it.”

Asbestos is banned in many countries of the world, including the U.K. and the European Union.

Earlier this week, new data proved that asbestos is still Canada’s top workplace killer by a wide margin. Then on Friday, December 9, the CBC reported that the federal government plans to announce a full ban on asbestos as early as next week.

Lung Cancer And Mesothelioma
We believe that a total asbestos ban in Canada is long overdue. We certainly don’t need anymore studies or statistics to convince us that it takes lives.

  • According to Statistics Canada, the number of new cases of mesothelioma diagnosed has more than doubled in 20 years.
  • Experts estimate that there are about 2,000 new cases each year including other asbestos-related cancers.
  • The Institute for Work & Health the costs of new cases alone at $1.7-billion per year.

Trust GreenStream
If your home was built before 1990, it probably contains asbestos in one form or another, and while it may be considered safe as long as the material is intact, renovations — even installing a home theatre system can create deadly asbestos dust.

You can trust the experienced asbestos removal experts and asbestos remediation experts at GreenStream Environmental to take care of the issue for you. In the Toronto area contact GreenStreamEnvironmental.ca at (416) 818-9414. Contact us for a quote today.

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.

What Happened to the Asbestos Ban?

A few years ago, the last asbestos mine in the country closed for good after a new Quebec provincial government nixed a deal for its owners. Canada went from becoming the biggest exporter of asbestos – and a despised champion of its protection from international regulation – to…a sort of wishy washy neutral stance.

It’s not what many were expecting, and the pressure is mounting on Prime Minister Trudeau to make good on his promise to ban the harmful substance entirely.

We know it was politics – in the form of a Conservative government that didn’t want to lose votes in rural Quebec – that kept asbestos on the table for so many years. Now, while it makes sense to go slow on some issues – like legalizing marijuana – when it comes to an outright ban on asbestos, there’s absolutely no reason for the federal government to hesitate. The evidence is in, and has been in for many years.

The Truth about Asbestos
As a country, Canada still imports asbestos containing good every year to the tune of $10 million, largely in the form of brake pads and industrial piping. And if we thought that Canadian asbestos exports were over? They’re not. Schools in South America and India are being built with Canadian asbestos as we speak.

Asbestos is banned in 55 countries, including the UK and Australia. What’s the delay? In July, the PM told the Globe and Mail that the government is “reviewing its strategy on asbestos, including a potential ban.”

Here are the facts already in evidence:

  • In 2011, the last year where statistics are available, 2,100 Canadians were diagnosed with asbestos-related cancers;
  • Treating the victims of asbestos costs almost $2 billion per year;
  • Every year, 150,000 more Canadian workers are exposed to asbestos;
  • Canada has one of the highest rates of mesothelioma in the world.

The science is not ambiguous on this issue. Inhaled asbestos fibres never leave the lungs, instead remaining to cause changes over time that can result in a host of respiratory issues, up to and including deadly cancers and mesothelioma. Period.

Safe, Not Sorry
Editorials in major newspapers across the country are calling not just for a ban, but for federally funded asbestos removal programs to deal with our shameful asbestos legacy once and for all. We can’t help but agree!

Asbestos exposure is no joke. If you suspect the presence of asbestos in your home, you can’t afford to cut corners or “save money” while your health and that of your family if the material is concerned. You can trust the experienced asbestos removal experts and asbestos remediation experts at GreenStream Environmental to take care of the issue for you. In the Toronto area contact GreenStreamEnvironmental.ca at (416) 818-9414. Contact us for a quote today.

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.

Canadian Federal Government Finally Backs Down from Asbestos Stance

Just as we speculated a couple of weeks ago, the federal government has now jumped off the sinking ship of asbestos production and exportation from Quebec.  Specifically, the Harper government has reversed the pro-asbestos stand it’s held in the face of international outcry and announced that it will no longer block international efforts to add chrysotile asbestos – the variety found and mined in Quebec – from the Rotterdam Convention.

The Rotterdam Convention
The Rotterdam Convention is a treaty entered into under the auspices of the United Nations and consists of a list of known hazardous materials. Materials that fall under the list are subject to trade restrictions. The important thing is that the list can only exist by consensus, so Canada’s stubborn stance has meant the difference between listing it and not.

It’s ironic that Canadians have the separatist Parti Québécois to thank for the development. The newly elected provincial government and its leader, Pauline Marois, have stated they will cancel the $58 million loan the previous provincial government promised to reopen the giant Jeffrey Mine. There have even been statements to the effect that they intend to ban chrysotile asbestos mining altogether.

Now, Ottawa will finally put money where it should be, offering up to $50 million towards diversifying the economy in the areas of Quebec where they mine it.

In Your Home Too?
The fact is that here in North America we are still dealing with the fallout from a decades long dependence on asbestos for construction purposes. Fire resistant and nearly indestructible, it was once considered a ‘miracle’ construction material. It was only after decades of exposure that the first signs of its health effects – including incurable mesothelioma – became evident.

  • The fact of the matter is that if a house was built before 1970, you have to assume that it contains asbestos, and it may appear in a wide variety of places.
  • If you’re planning on buying an older home, an asbestos inspection should be an essential part of your pre-purchase checklist.

Before you buy, call in the experts from GreenStream Environmental Services for an asbestos inspection. If you already own an older home, we offer professional vermiculite and asbestos remediation services to help you contain and then rid yourself of this problem.

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

Does the Parti Québécois (PQ) Victory Mean the End of Canadian Asbestos Exportation?

The recent Québec election that saw the Parti Québécois recapturing the province may spell the end of the Canadian exportation industry. During the campaign, Parti Québécois leader Pauline Marois herself previously stated that if elected her government would cancel the $58-million loan which was extended by the Jean Charest government to the company looking to re-open the giant Jeffrey asbestos mine.

The PQ’s anti-asbestos stance was echoed by the Québec Solidaire party as well. In contrast, the federal government has always expressed its support of the asbestos industry and went so far as to participate in a successful effort to block an international ban on asbestos under the Rotterdam Convention earlier this summer. However, without private or public financing, the Jeffrey Mine project will be a non-starter.

In Your Home Too?
It’s hard to understand any justification for exporting asbestos when we’re still dealing with the fallout from North America’s decades long dependence on the material for construction purposes. Fire resistant and nearly indestructible, it was once considered a ‘miracle’ construction material. It was only after decades of exposure that the first signs of its health effects – including incurable mesothelioma – became evident.

The fact of the matter is that if a house was built before 1970, you have to assume that it contains asbestos, and it may appear in a wide variety of places.

If you’re planning on buying an older home, an asbestos inspection should be an essential part of your pre-purchase checklist.

Before you buy, call in the experts from GreenStream Environmental Services for an asbestos inspection. If you already own an older home, we offer professional vermiculite and asbestos remediation services to help you contain and then rid yourself of this problem.

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

Canadian Asbestos Exportation Continues to Draw Headlines

The international uproar over the Quebec government’s decision to green light the reopening of the giant Jeffrey Asbestos Mine by way of a $58 million loan just won’t go away this summer.

The latest volley in the ongoing battle to stop Canadian asbestos exportation came from a long time anti-asbestos activist, Kathleen Ruff. Ms. Ruff and her sister lost their father to asbestos related disease and have organized the 2nd annual Walk to Remember Victims of Asbestos to take place in Sarnia on September 29, 2012.

In an online piece for her website, rightoncanada.ca, she describes inviting Federal Health Minister Leona Aglukkaq to the event. The Health Minister sidestepped the invitation by deferring it, a move the sisters are calling ‘callous’. Minister Aglukkaq says that asbestos is an issue that would fall under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Natural Resources.

The federal Minister of Natural Resources, Joe Oliver, has been a supporter of the Canadian asbestos industry. Sadly, when it comes to asbestos it shows that the same issues that have been at work now for decades – politics vs. health and environmental concerns – are still at play.

Asbestos in Your Home
While it’s been banned from residential uses in Canada for decades, if you have a house built before 1970 you should assume that it contains asbestos somewhere. It can show up in a variety of places both outdoors and indoors including:

  • Roofing
  • Siding
  • Windows and window caulking
  • Ceiling tiles
  • Floor tiles
  • Pipe chasing
  • Insulation

Don’t Try This At Home
In many of its residential uses, including floor and ceiling tiles, asbestos actually appears in a mixture. The material is considered safe as long as it’s intact however damage and degradation can produce the friable – or inhalable – fibres which have been proven to cause lung disease, including cancer and mesothelioma.

Just as public institutions keep tabs on it, you should be aware of where asbestos is located in your home and keep an eye on it regularly for damage or deterioration. It will be crucial information when you do any renovations, which will almost certainly produce asbestos containing dust when it involves those areas.

Let us Help
Get peace of mind from GreenStream Environmental – call us for an asbestos inspection or removal quote today.

If you are looking to buy or renovate an older home then do yourself a favour and include an asbestos inspection on the list of things to do.

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.

Asbestos News: Statement Calls for Outright Global Ban

Voices continue to rise in opposition to the Quebec government’s Canada Day announcement that they will grant a direct loan of $58 million to reopen the Jeffrey Mine, the world’s largest asbestos mine.

A Statement endorsed by over 150 public health and other organizations along with individual scientists calls for an outright worldwide ban on the mining, use and export of all forms of asbestos – including the chrysotile variety that Canadian interests plan to soon begin producing and exporting. The Statement was issued by the Joint Policy Committee of the Societies of Epidemiology (JPC-SE – www.jpc-se.org). The JPC-SE comprises a number of Canadian, American and international epidemiology organizations

Industry representatives continue to insist that the chrysotile variety of asbestos in Quebec’s giant Jeffrey Mine can be mined and used safely, and even go so far as to say that it doesn’t cause mesothelioma in the same way as other types of asbestos.

However, in the Statement Dr. Robert Hiatt, representing the American College of Epidemiology, says, “We call specifically on the major asbestos exporting countries – Brazil, Canada, Kazakhstan, and Russia – to respect the right to health by ceasing the mining, use, and export of asbestos, and providing transition assistance to their asbestos-mining communities.”

Adds Professor Colin Soskolne, PhD, past-president of the Canadian Society of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, “The asbestos industry continues today to undermine public health policy by denying the overwhelming scientific evidence and promoting asbestos use in developing countries.”

The Statement calls for comprehensive public education on the hazards of asbestos and to establish an inventory of existing sites, particularly in areas where children are at risk. It also specifically mentions the intimidation of scientists by the asbestos industry.

Maybe even in your home!
At one time, asbestos used for everything from building construction to household products and even decorations. If your home was built before the 1970’s, you should assume it contains asbestos in one form or another. If you are looking to buy or renovate an older home then do yourself a favour and include an asbestos inspection on the list of things to do.

The material is very durable and likely to last for many years in bound form or if it’s contained, but it’s also true that many of the asbestos containing elements that you’ll find nowadays have already been in place for a long time. The material does eventually become brittle and break apart, capable of producing the friable – or inhalable – fibres that have been shown to cause lung disease, including mesothelioma.

Please don’t try to handle it yourself!
Get peace of mind from GreenStream Environmental – call us for an asbestos inspection or removal quote today.

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.

Quebec Looks to Revive Canadian Asbestos Exportation

The Quebec government has stunned international markets with the news – announced over Canada day weekend – that it was following through with a whopping $58 million loan to Balcorp Ltd., the company which wants to reopen the giant Jeffrey Mine in Quebec’s Eastern Townships.

The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Prime Minister Steven Harper has stayed silent on the issue for political reasons. With the scientific community united in its opinion that there is no safe level of exposure to any kind of asbestos, even the Chrysotile Institute, which long lobbied for the “safe” extraction and use of chrysotile asbestos over other types, recently announced its disbanding.

Still, Balcorp. and the Quebec-based industry insist that the substance, also called white asbestos, can be mined and used safely in construction and other applications as an alternative to other types of asbestos, for example brown, blue or tremolite asbestos.

Since asbestos has been banned from virtually all uses in developed countries in Europe and North America, the material is destined for exportation to developing nations like India, Indonesia and Vietnam. The move is widely seen throughout the rest of Canada as a black eye for this country on the world stage and has been criticized by the Canadian Medical Association and the Canadian Cancer Association.

No level of exposure is considered safe, and ignorance is definitely not bliss where this dangerous material is concerned.

Could There Be Asbestos in Your Home?
Get expert help. The fact of the matter is that if your home was built before 1970, you have to assume that it contains asbestos, and it may appear in a wide variety of places.

Before any renovation projects, call in the experts from GreenStream Environmental Services for an asbestos inspection. At GreenStream Environmental Services, we offer professional vermiculite and asbestos remediation services to help you contain and then rid yourself of this problem.

Certainly, if you’re planning on buying an older home, it should be an essential part of your pre-purchase checklist.

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, North York, Mississauga, the GTA and Southern Ontario, call today at 416-818-9414.  You’ll be glad you did

Canada and Asbestos Exportation: The Truth

As reported in Postmedia News recently, documents obtained under the Freedom of Information Act seem to clearly indicate that the Canadian government has been helping to promote the supposedly “safe” mining and use of chrysotile asbestos even as it acknowledged the documented health risks. This comes in direct contrast to the current federal government’s  repeated assertions that Canada’s position has been consistent throughout.

The documents include a memo to Environment Minister Peter Kent which concurred with the 2002 assessment of chrysotile asbestos as a hazardous material under Annex III of the UN’s Rotterdam Convention. The briefing note states that Canada agreed that it accepted the scientific evidence, but still opposed its inclusion on the list, which would have required sellers to inform buyers of the hazards of asbestos, among other things.

It only underscores the Canadian government’s long term efforts to block the listing of chrysotile asbestos largely mined in Quebec, an industry that it is currently trying to revive with the support of the provincial government.

Maybe even in your home!
If your home was built before the 1970’s, you should assume it contains asbestos in one form or another. If you are looking to buy or renovate an older home then do yourself a favour and include an asbestos inspection on the list of things to do.

The material is very durable and likely to last for many years in bound form or if it’s contained, but it’s also true that many of the asbestos containing elements that you’ll find nowadays have already been in place for a long time. The material does eventually become brittle and break apart, capable of producing the friable – or inhalable – fibres that have been shown to cause lung disease, including mesothelioma.

Please don’t try to handle it yourself!
Get peace of mind from GreenStream Environmental – call us for a quote today. 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, Scarborough, Markham, York Region, the GTA and Southern Ontario, call today at 416-818-9414.  You’ll be glad you did.

Asbestos Lobby Group to Dissolve

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

Please Note!
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.

Canadian Red Cross Exec Ignites Controversy with Asbestos Industry Links

Business and personal relationships with links to the asbestos industry may lead the Canadian Red Cross Society to ask for the resignation of one of its Executive Board Members. Board Member Roshi Chandha hit the headlines earlier this month when anti-asbestos activists questioned the propriety of her serving with an organization known for its humanitarian work around the world.

Balcorp Ltd.
At issue is the fact that Ms Chandha is the wife of Baljit Chandha, president of Montreal-based Balcorp Ltd. and the main push behind the bid to re-open the huge Jeffrey Asbestos Mine in Quebec. As part of the deal, Balcorp is looking for $58 million in loan guarantees from the Quebec government.

Roshi Chandha also serves as an executive of Seja Trade Ltd., a shipping company that exports asbestos to Asian countries. The company is a subsidiary of Balcorp.

The Canadian Red Cross does not normally look into the outside business interests of its board members, but has decided to meet and review Ms Chandha’s position early in the new year. The effort to bring her ties to the asbestos industry to light was spearheaded by anti-asbestos activist Leah Nielson, who grew up in Sarnia, Ontario and watched her father die of mesothelioma in 2008.  Her father worked in construction and brought home the asbestos fibres on his work clothes, and the deadly disease may also have affected her mother, who is currently under medical observation for a spot on her lung.

Asbestos Exposure
His example illustrates a lingering problem. Not only did construction workers of much of the 20th century expose themselves and their families to the deadly effects of asbestos, they left behind a wide variety of asbestos-tainted products routinely used in construction prior to 1970, including insulation, siding, ceiling and roof tiles and more.

Please note – if you suspect any kind of asbestos use in your home, and before any renovation projects, please DO NOT DISTURB OR HANDLE the material in question. The danger from asbestos comes from inhaling the fibres, and anything you can do to contain or avoid it until you can call in the experts from GreenStream Environmental Services will help to minimize the impact.

It is not considered dangerous if the material is still intact; however any future nicks or breaks in the surface can mean a potential hazard.

At GreenStream Environmental Services, we offer professional vermiculite and asbestos remediation services. In the Toronto area  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 including 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.