April 4, 2011 – A recent survey commissioned by the Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment (CASE) has revealed that more than three-quarters of Quebecers oppose the government financing of the expansion of the Jeffrey Asbestos Mine in the town of Asbestos, Canada. In addition, according to the online survey of 1,001 Quebecers, 65% of those polled oppose any government funding of the asbestos industry.
A group of investors seeks to expand the nearly exhausted open-pit Jeffrey Mine, until recently the world’s largest asbestos mine. This would allow mine operators to extract and export asbestos to developing countries for the next 25 years. The Quebec government is considering their request to guarantee a $58 million bank loan.
The introduction to the survey stated: “On the one hand, 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.”
In response to the release of the survey results, Dr. Fernand Turcotte of CASE issued a statement pointing out that “(h)ealth experts in Quebec and around the world have asked the Quebec government not to finance the Jeffrey mine. . . . The great majority of Quebec people are also opposed to (government) financing of the Jeffrey mine. Is the government listening?”
Read more about the Jeffrey Mine – http://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/04/business/04asbestos.html?_r=3&sq=&scp=2&pagewanted=all