Signs of asbestos related disease reported
The facts show a different situation, however. A report in the New York Times, City in Russia Unable to Kick Asbestos Habit, describes the following situation at the town of Asbest – location of the Uralasbest mine, the world’s biggest asbestos mine:
According to Dr. Evgeny Kovalevskiy, lead scientist at the Research Institute of Occupational Health of the Russian Academy of Medical Sciences, rigorous, safe working conditions have been instituted at the Uralasbest mine for many years and the mine no longer presents any health problems.
Kovalevskiy helps promote the asbestos trade. In May this year, as part of the Russian government delegation, he helped defeat the listing of chrysotile asbestos as a hazardous substance at the UN Rotterdam Convention conference. Court documents show that in 2012 he testified at the Supreme Court of Brazil on behalf of the Brazilian Chrysotile Institute (an industry lobby group) and a Brazilian trade union. Kovalevskiy argued that use of chrysotile asbestos should continue and that a proposed ban on asbestos in Brazil should be rejected. In testifying to the court, Kovalevskiy referred to Russia’s success in implementing strict controls over asbestos dust as evidence in support of continued use of chrysotile asbestos.
Scientists around the world have criticized the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) for appointing Kovalevskiy and the Research Institute of Occupational Health of the Russian Academy of Medical Sciences as IARC collaborators on a Uralasbest study, since both have shown lack of integrity and both have a conflict of interest because of their promotion of uncontrolled trade in chrysotile asbestos and because of their misrepresentation of scientific research.
July 13, 2013
Kathleen Ruff, RightOnCanada