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Monday, July 29, 2013

US Asbestos Consumption Only Slightly Down in 2012

The US Geological survey reported today, that asbestos, still NOT yet banned in the US, is still being consumed domestically at incredible rates. Asbestos is a known carcinogen, causing mesothelioma, a rare and fatal disease. 

"Asbestos has not been mined in the United States since 2002
with imports meeting the needs of the domestic marketplace.
Estimated U.S. apparent consumption was 1,020 metric tons (t)
in 2012, a 14% decrease from 1,180 t in 2011. World production
was 1.97 million metric tons (Mt) in 2012, a slight decrease
from 2.02 Mt in 2011.

In 2012, U.S. apparent consumption of asbestos decreased
by 14% from that in 2011 (table 1). The chloralkali industry
was the leading consumer of asbestos with an estimated 67%
of the market; followed by roofing products, 30%; coatings and
compounds, plastics, and other, 3%. The chloralkali industry
increased its share of the overall asbestos sales owing mainly to
the decreased use of asbestos in roof coating formulations. Only
a few U.S. companies manufacture asbestos-based products.

"The departure of even one company from the market, therefore,
can significantly affect U.S. asbestos consumption. Asbestos
use in roof coatings has been declining since 1993 because
of the widespread availability of nonasbestos roof coatings.
More recently, rising asbestos prices also were likely to have
contributed to decreased use of asbestos in roofing coatings.
The leading consumer, the chloralkali industry, used asbestos to
manufacture semipermeable diaphragms that separate chlorine
generated at the cell anode from the starting brine in the
electrolytic cell.

"Chrysotile was the only type of asbestos used in the United
States in 2012. Of the asbestos imported for use by industry, an
estimated 19% of the quantity was grade 4, 48% was grade 5,
31% was grade 7, and 2% was of unspecified grade.
For over 3 decades the Law Offices of Jon L. Gelman  1.973.696.7900 have been representing injured workers and their families who have suffered occupational accidents and illnesses.