Docs Urge Canada to Stop Asbestos Exports

Canada’s doctors are calling their government “shameful” for its decision that opposes the limitation of chrysotile asbestos exports. The Canadian government also refused to support labeling this proven carcinogen as a hazardous product.

The government’s decision has served as a vivid reminder to Canadians of the mining practices in the Ontario town of Sarnia that caused so many of its citizens to contract mesothelioma – a rare cancer of the tissues lining the lungs, chest, and abdominal cavity – it’s since been nicknamed the mesothelioma capital of Canada.

Occupational physician Dr. Deborah Hillier pointed out that Canada exports asbestos mined in Quebec to “Third World countries where it is not used appropriately.” Workers in these countries are therefore at risk for asbestosis, mesothelioma, lung cancer, and other asbestos-related diseases. These countries are also manufacturing products with the carcinogen that are being sent back into Canada, expanding the exposure.

Chrysotile asbestos makes up more than 90 percent of all asbestos mined globally. The battle between the doctors and the Canadian government isn’t new — the mining and export of chrysotile asbestos has caused controversy among health professionals and the regulatory bodies within governments of countries that mine it for many years. The battle centers on the profitability of mining and exporting asbestos to the countries versus the alarming health risks the substance has been proven to cause.

Living with the day-to-day hardships of mesothelioma – whether it is you or a loved one who has been diagnosed with the illness – is both emotionally and financially taxing for all who are involved. If you feel that a company or former employer may be responsible for the asbestos exposure that led to an illness, contact a mesothelioma attorney to learn about filing a mesothelioma lawsuit.