New asbestos exacerbating Pacific problems

April 08, 2016 at 3:48 PM

A new report on the use of asbestos in the Pacific has found that new forms of asbestos being imported into the region from Asia are exarcebating an already serious problem.
The report, which looked at 13 island countries, found more than 180,000 square metres of asbestos in non-residential buildings, enough to cover 26 football fields.
The report noted that in many cases importers didn't even know they were importing asbestos. There is not a single Pacific Island nation that has banned the toxic material.
The author of the report commented "I think if we don't do that then products will surreptiously come in anyway so it is really, let us make it unacceptable to have these kind of products. And if the demand and the recognition of those products that have it ceases, then we won't have this material come in.""It is the much bigger problem it is the long term problem it is all those houses all those residential premises and that is the material that is more important from a disaster risk point of view just because of sheer volume. Really I mean to rid that from the entire region you are talking about hundreds of millions of dollars quite a large funded project would be needed to address that," he said.