Advertisement
Travel

Why the Deadly Asbestos Industry Is Still Alive and Well

VICE reporter Milène Larsson investigates why the deadly industry of mining and selling asbestos—a known carcinogen that kills more than 100,000 people a year—is still going strong.

by VICE Staff
Feb 16 2016, 4:46pm

Despite irrefutable scientific evidence calling out the dangers of asbestos, 2 million tons of the carcinogen are exported every year to the developing world, where it's often handled with little to no regulation.

For this episode of VICE Reports, correspondent Milène Larsson traveled to the world's largest asbestos mine in the eponymous town of Asbest, Russia, to meet workers whose livelihoods revolve entirely around the dangerous mineral. Surprisingly, the risks associated with asbestos mining didn't seem to worry the inhabitants; in fact, asbestos is the city's pride, celebrated with monuments, songs, and even its own museum.

Larsson then visits Libby, Montana, another mining town almost on the other side of the globe, where the effects of asbestos exposure are undeniable: 400 townspeople have died from asbestos-related diseases, and many more are slowly choking to death. Why is the deadly industry of mining and selling asbestos still alive and well?

Tagged:
Travel
russia
VICE REPORTS
asbestos
carcinogen
Lung Cancer
deadly industry
mesothelioma
libby montana
cancer epidemic
asbestos insutry
world's biggest asbestos mine
uralasbest
asbeste