What is it?

Asbestos is the name for various fibrous silicate minerals of which three – Chrysotile (white asbestos), Amosite (brown asbestos) and Crocidolite (blue asbestos) – were extensively exploited for manufactured goods from the 19th century onwards.

Asbestos fibres have excellent properties including fire resistance, thermal, electrical and acoustic insulation, high tensile strength, flexibility, and resistance to chemical corrosion and condensation. These properties led to the development of asbestos products (asbestos containing materials or ACMs). At its peak, more than 3000 asbestos products were manufactured across the world before it was widely recognised as a serious, long-term health hazard and banned by most countries.