Asbestos Clean-up Projects

In BOZEMAN, MT, a sum of $830,000 has been sent to the city by the DEQ to remove toxins from the public library. During the first half of the 20th century, the site of the public library was used to store asbestos ore mined in Gallatin County, but contamination to the soil resulting from that has led to the city paying contractors more than $2.4 million to remove the toxic soil. Reimbursement for the toxin removal has been a spot of contention between Bozeman and the state. The city is hoping that the state will contribute an additional $1 million toward the clean-up efforts. In IL, Harlan Hall at Lake Forest College was found to be riddled with asbestos. The director of Facilities Management (FanMac) at the college, David Siebert, noted that the college has a policy of taking immediate action for any amount of asbestos found, and as a result, the levels rarely become hazardous to students and staff. The asbestos was discovered on a tank near the site where FanMac employees were to install a new boiler and repair steam leaks.

An asbestos assessment company, Brennan’s Peb, then determined that the asbestos could pose a problem and needed to be removed. Removal is always recommended when work is to be done around the asbestos or it is friable — capable of breaking apart and becoming airborne. Once airborne, asbestos can be inhaled and pose a cancer hazard. The Harlan Hall incident was not the first discovery of asbestos at the Lake Forest College campus. According to Siebert, such findings happened almost annually. In almost all of the cases, the asbestos was found to hamper the progress of another construction project. Siebert noted, “Any recent construction project in the last 10 years has had abatement: Deerpath, Nollen, Commons, Sports Center, Harlan boiler….” The next maintenance project at the school at Hixon Hall is scheduled for an asbestos assessment before the work begins. Brennan’s Peb has had a long-term relationship with the college, acting as their preferred asbestos abatement business to remove asbestos wherever it is found. According to its owner, Patrick Brennan, “Lake Forest College is one of the most proactive places I’ve ever dealt with.”