Buried Asbestos Remains a Concern at EPA Superfund Sites

Scientists have discovered that the soil composition typically used by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to cap asbestos Superfund sites actually increases mobility of the toxic mineral, sending it into groundwater that could endanger people nearby. This discovery disproves the long-held belief that, once buried, asbestos waste no longer presents a serious problem. The Journal of Hazardous Materials Letters published the findings in early 2021. Researchers referenced at least 16 federal Superfund sites designated by the EPA as environmental emergencies, along with many lesser-contaminated asbestos dumping grounds. “People should be aware of what’s out there,” Sanjay Mohanty, lead study author and assistant professor at UCLA Samueli School of Engineering, told The Mesothelioma Center at Asbestos.com. “We typically assume, once it’s embedded in the soil, there is no risk. But we’ve shown here, in some instances, that’s not the case.” Mohanty was part of a research team that included Jane Willenbring, associate professor of geological sciences at Stanford University; and Ashkan Salamatipour, clinical research specialist at Midwestern University, Chicago College of Osteopathic Medicine. The project began at the University of Pennsylvania Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences, where all three served previously. The findings were based in part on samples taken from the BoRit asbestos Superfund site in Am...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - Category: Environmental Health Authors: Source Type: news

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