An Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) official said the agency may ban asbestos near the end of the year.
Alexandra Dapolito Dunn, assistant administrator of the EPA’s Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention, said the agency will complete its risk assessment of asbestos within the three years set out by Congress by the end of 2019.
“If there is any unreasonable risk, the EPA will regulate, and our regulation could take the form of a ban,” Dunn told The Hill.
While asbestos is not widely used in the U.S., some products that contain asbestos are imported into the U.S. for the manufacture other products, including chlorine, some automotive parts, and in the oil drilling process.
But the dangers of asbestos have long been documented: the carcinogen causes illnesses like lung cancer, mesothelioma and asbestosis.