Back off on asbestos: poll

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Back off on asbestos: poll

By MICHELLE LALONDE, The Gazette January 15, 2011

More than three-quarters of Quebecers oppose the idea of the Quebec government financing a project to expand the Jeffrey asbestos mine, according to a survey commissioned by the Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment.

The online survey of 1,001 Quebecers taken by Leger Marketing last week and made public yesterday also showed that 65 per cent of Quebecers oppose government financing of the asbestos industry.

Quebec is considering a request to guarantee a $58-million bank loan to investors who want to expand the nearly exhausted open-pit asbestos mine in the town of Asbestos, in order to export asbestos to developing countries over 25 years.

The survey told respondents: “This project represents the creation of jobs and significant economic spinoffs for the region. On the other hand, all of the medical authorities, including the Canadian Cancer Society, oppose it because asbestos causes pulmonary illnesses (asbestosis) and cancers.”

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