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23 August 2018

Dramatic fall in asbestos production worldwide

Over the past years, there has been a dramatic drop in asbestos production worldwide, according to figures published by the United States Geological Survey (USGS). The figures revealed a drop from around 2.1 million tonnes in 2012 to approximately 1.4 million tonnes in 2015.

According to the International Ban Asbestos Secretariat (IBAS), the fall depends primarily on a revision of Russian production levels for that period.

Estimates for Chinese asbestos production were also slashed – by nearly 50% for the years 2014 and 2015. The amendments for Brazil and Kazakhstan were less dramatic but the initial production estimates for 2015 were reduced by ~15% for both countries in the latest revision.

In November 2017, the Federal Supreme Court of Brazil ruled on the prohibition of the extraction, marketing and distribution of asbestos (chrysotile variety) throughout the country.

With 300.000 metric tons produced in 2016, Brazil was the third largest asbestos producer in the world after Russia and China.

The revised data can be downloaded from the USGS website

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