Canada Condemned for Asbestos Practices
In a recent report from the medical journal, Lancet, experts condemn Canada for its exports of asbestos to foreign countries where asbestos safety laws are lax.
In a report published by the medical journal, Lancet, experts condemned the Canadian government for its practices. Specialists say that the practice is hypocrisy because Canada has banned asbestos in its own county, yet it still exports the material.
However, the office for the Canadian Minister of Natural Resources said that its practice has a sound scientific basis.
Asbestos is a natural mineral that was used frequently during twentieth-century construction. It was commonly used as insulation.
However, the material can be deadly if tampered. Inhaling or ingesting the material causes the fibers to become lodged in the lining of the heart, lungs and abdomen. Once these fibers are lodged, inflammation occurs which mutates the DNA in these tissues' cells. The mutation that occurs in one that turns off the switch that regulates cell growth and division, causing uncontrolled cell division. This, then, leads to cancer. Mesothelioma is the most common form of cancer related to asbestos.
What is mesothelioma?
Mesothelioma is the cancer most associated with tampering with asbestos. Mesothelioma is a dangerous and aggressive form of cancer, with a grim prognosis. Patients who are diagnosed with mesothelioma are usually only given six months to a year to live, and many do not experience symptoms for up to thirty years after initial exposure to asbestos.
The World Health Organization says that all forms of asbestos are dangerous. Fifty countries have banned the substance, including Canada.
Approximately 100,000 people die every year from asbestos related diseases, and 125 million people remain exposed to the substance worldwide.
Last year, Canada shipped 150,000,000 kilograms to countries where laws and regulations regarding how to properly handle the material are lax, including countries like India, Indonesia and the Philippines.
The Canadian government has spent millions of dollars removing asbestos from buildings, including the Parliament.
Many Canadian organizations, including the Quebec Medical Association, Canadian Cancer Society, and the Canadian Medical Association have called Canada's asbestos practices deplorable, shameful and unethical.
The industry had seemed doomed as asbestos deposits were dwindling, but an international consortium proposed converting a closed mine into a new one that could produce about 236,000,000 kilograms of white asbestos a year, the industry does seem to be growing.
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