Photo: The battle continues over Canada's asbestos exports

All types of asbestos are harmful and cause cancer (Credit: Susana Ferreira Machado).

By Lisa Gue, Environmental Health Policy Analyst

What a disgrace. The Governments of Canada and Quebec continue to use their political power to prop up the asbestos industry. Last week, Canada blocked international efforts to include asbestos in a United Nations treaty on hazardous substances (the Rotterdam Convention).

Meanwhile, the Government of Quebec has conditionally approved a $58 million loan to allow the Jeffrey Mine to continue extracting asbestos for export to developing countries — despite mounting opposition at home and abroad.

The David Suzuki Foundation has joined a coalition of environmental groups calling on the Government of Quebec to reverse this decision.

There is some good news: The federal government's spending plan tabled earlier this month indicates that government funding to the pro-asbestos lobby group, the Chrysotile Institute, will not be renewed. Canadian taxpayer subsidies to the institute have totalled more than $20 million since 1984.

All types of asbestos are harmful and cause cancer. The federal government and Quebec can help prevent deaths from cancer and other asbestos-related diseases by acting now to stop Canadian asbestos mining and export.

Read more on Docs Talk: Who's keeping the Canadian asbestos industry alive?

June 28, 2011

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Jun 30, 2011
3:24 PM

David Suzuki Foundation volunteers attended the screening of Breathtaking if you want to check it out.

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