EPA and HHS proclaim Libby, Montana constitutes health emergency for toxic asbestos!

Libby, Montana(MesotheliomaCancerNews.com)–The United States Department of Health and Human Services along the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) http://www.epa.gov held a joint press conference to declare a public health emergency in Montana. The towns of Libby and Troy in Northwest Montana were deemed a public health emergency for the hundreds of asbestos-related illnesses, diseases and deaths that have been documented in these two tiny towns.

Federal regulators with the EPA declared the emergency under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) for the first time which says the conditions at the Libby asbestos site constitute a public health emergency. The Agency for Toxic Substance and Disease Registry’s investigation unearthed the shockingly high incidence of asbestosis in the Libby and Troy areas staggeringly higher than the national average during the time from 1979 to 1998. Asbestosis is a chronic, incurable lung condition caused by primary and secondary exposure to asbestos and asbestos containing materials.

The Administrator for the EPA, Lisa P. Jackson reviewed the conditions of the Libby asbestos site, which has been on the EPA’s Superfund National Priorities List since 2002, and determined the site conditions present a significant threat to public health and the well being of Libby area residents. The Department of Health and Human Services is making a short-term grant available to provide funding for desperately needed asbestos related medical care and treatment to Libby area residents. Asbestos is a toxic substance know to be a human carcinogen and can cause fatal cancers like mesothelioma lung cancer.

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