In a historic ruling that passed unanimously in a plenary session of Congress, Colombian lawmakers imposed a complete ban on the production, commercialization and distribution of asbestos.
The ruling goes into effect immediately and all industries must adapt their processes to non-harmful compounds before 2021. The Ministry of Labor is in charge of helping companies and workers adapt to clean technologies.
Already banned in more than 60 countries, the law affects companies that produce adhesives, roof sealants, coatings; cement products; pipeline wrap; reinforced plastics; felts; floor tiles among many others.
In Colombia, during the last 50 years, more than 1,700 people have died from lung cancer and mesothelioma as a result of asbestos use.