A report recently released by the Environmental Protections Agency Office of the Inspector General finds that current guidelines for the EPA’s Asbestos Demolition Standard allow “the release of potentially harmful quantities of asbestos.” The OIG says that the current policy, which was established in 1973, needs to be updated to include the possible contamination from runoff wastewater containing asbestos. The current policy only requires that “asbestos-containing materials were well-soaked to prevent the fibers from becoming airborne during the demolition process.”

The OIG report recommends that the EPA evaluate health risks that may be associated with the runoff from demolitions. The EPA administration disagreed with the report saying the tests conducted were not a fair representation of demolitions. However, the agency notes that the current regulations are dated and further testing should be done to determine the safest methods for disposal.

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