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Current and historical American asbestos regulations

, : Current and historical American asbestos regulations. Monaldi Archives for Chest Disease 53(2): 181-185

Asbestos, and asbestos-containing materials, are subject to regulation in the USA by both the federal government and each of the 50 state governments. This paper summarizes the federal government asbestos regulations which apply to the use of asbestos, asbestos-containing products, and asbestos fiber releases, in the workplace and in the ambient environment through the USA. Regulations by the 50 states apply only within the jurisdiction of each state and, to a large extent, mimic those of the federal government. The state regulations are not discussed in this paper. The principal American government agencies that deal with asbestos regulation are the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Generally, OSHA regulations apply to regulate asbestos exposures, and potential asbestos exposures, in the occupational workplace while EPA regulations apply to asbestos exposures, and potential asbestos exposures, in the nonoccupational setting. Both agencies set regulatory levels for allowable asbestos exposure. Those levels have changed, in a decreasing progression, since their enactment in the early 1970s. This paper discusses those levels and traces their progression over time.


PMID: 9689805

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