Asbestos use in the United States over the past year has increased by 26 percent compared to
2009, according to the 2012 United States Geological Survey Mineral Commodity Summaries.

Many Americans falsely believe that asbestos use is banned. That’s not true. The mining of asbestos has been banned since 2002. But companies still import a known carcinogen that causes mesothelioma, a deadly cancer that 3,000 Americans are diagnosed with ever year.

In the past year, the United States has imported 1,100 tons of asbestos. In 2009, it imported 869 tons. According to the report, roofing products accounted for about 60 percent of asbestos products imported, the chloralkali industry used about 35 percent and the rest, about 5 percent, is unknown.

Linda Reinstein, co-founder of the Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization, is calling for a ban on the importation of raw asbestos and asbestos-containing products, on the ADAO blog.

She wrote, “I have lost my husband Alan to Mesothelioma, a disease caused from asbestos exposure. Nothing can bring him or the hundreds of thousands of other victims back to life, but we can begin by aggressively preventing exposure thus eliminating deadly diseases.”

I couldn’t agree more.

As an asbestos attorney, I have seen the damage asbestos exposure causes to individuals and families first-hand. There is no excuse. Every year approximately 10,000 people die from asbestos-related diseases.

How much more evidence do we need?