12/01/2007

Update of Study of Asbestos Disease

An updated NIOSH (US-American Institute of Occupational Safety and Health)
study of asbestos-related diseases among vermiculite miners, millers, and
processors in Libby, Montana, was published on-line by Environmental Health
Perspectives, a peer-reviewed research journal of the National Institute of
Environmental Health Sciences, on January 3. The study followed the Libby
workers through 2001 and found that they had significantly higher than expected
incidences of fatal asbestosis, lung cancer, and cancer of the pleura. The
findings were consistent with previous mortality studies of workers from this
cohort, which were published by NIOSH researchers in the 1980s.

Vermiculite is a naturally occurring mineral mined in the United States,
Brazil, Argentina, Mexico, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Kenya, Uganda, Egypt, India,
Russia, China, Japan, and Australia. Mined vermiculite ore is milled to produce
vermiculite concentrate of various sizes and grades. When rapidly heated,
vermiculite concentrate expands to form small, light-weight, accordion-shaped
granules. Vermiculite is used in construction products (loose-fill attic
insulation, acoustic finishes, spray-on fireproofing, gypsum plaster, concrete
mixes for swimming pools), consumer products (packing materials, adsorbent in
laboratories), agricultural and horticultural products (animal feed, bulking
agent, fertilizers, pesticides, seed encapsulant, hydroponics, potting mixes,
soil conditioners), and in industrial products (brake shoes and pads, drilling
muds, furnaces, filters, insulator blocks, paints, and sealants) (U.S. EPA
2006).


More info


AplusA-online.de - Source: National Institute of Occuaptional Safety and Health