Special thanks to our friends at Asbestos.com for sharing their knowledge and resources.
Asbestos (pronounced uhs·beh·stuhs) is a group of carcinogenic minerals that is extremely harmful if inhaled or ingested. While asbestos does not occur naturally in Florida, many Sunshine State cities were hubs for asbestos processing, including Boca Raton and Pompano Beach. This material was heavily used in construction, shipbuilding, and other industries due to its flexible and heat-resistant nature, before its dangers were known. According to The Mesothelioma Center, "U.S. companies produced thousands of products containing asbestos until the 1980s," and it is still not banned today.
Why is asbestos bad?
Asbestos is carcinogenic (cancer-causing). Its flexible fibers become trapped in the body if inhaled or ingested. Exposure to asbestos is the leading cause of Mesothelioma, at type of cancer that originates in the lining of the lungs or abdomen. It is also known to cause lung and other cancers and asbestos-related diseases. Learn about asbestos exposure risks here.
The Center for Watershed Protection states that there are 3 main ways asbestos enters our water supplies:
Corroded & broken pipes
Disturbance of natural deposits (not naturally-occurring in FL)
Deteriorating infrastructure is often the culprit when asbestos contaminates our drinking water supplies and waterways. Find out more about the environmental impacts of asbestos at these awesome sources.
Make sure to report any asbestos-related compliance, construction, or industry issues through the appropriate channels.
How To Handle
According to Asbestos.com, the risk of developing Mesothelioma and other serious diseases increases with each exposure to asbestos.
Due to its extreme toxicity, asbestos should only be handled by licensed professionals. Handling asbestos improperly can result in severe consequences for yourself and others across your community.
How to Recycle
Asbestos is deadly, and there are strict laws and regulations in place regarding how to dispose of it. It is also important to note that asbestos recycling is not available to the public in the United States.
Please help minimize the risk of asbestos exposure for you, your family, and our community, by doing it the right way and hiring a professional if you are in need of asbestos-related services.
What is asbestos recycled into?
Asbestos is recycled in several ways to make different and nonhazardous materials. The most popular method turns asbestos into glass for use in stoneware, ceramic products, concrete, and roadway materials.