Environmental Protection Agency
April 5, 2022
Washington, DC – Today the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is taking action to protect people from asbestos exposure by releasing a proposed rule to prohibit ongoing uses of Chrysotile asbestos, the only known form of asbestos currently imported into the U.S. This proposed rule is the first-ever risk management rule issued under the new process for evaluating and addressing the safety of existing chemicals under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) that was enacted in 2016. The proposed rule would ban Chrysotile asbestos, which is found in products like asbestos diaphragms (used in the chlor-alkali industry), sheet gaskets, brake blocks, aftermarket automotive brakes/linings, other vehicle friction products, and other gaskets also imported into the U.S.
The chrysotile asbestos ban is “a landmark step forward,” said Linda Reinstein, president of the Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization, an EIA partner. In 2006, her husband died of mesothelioma, a cancer tied to asbestos exposure. “The reality is now we have part one,” Reinstein said. “But anything less than a full ban doesn’t protect public health.”