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Summary Report: Exposure to asbestos-containing vermiculite from Libby, Montana, at 28 processing sites in the United States

The Summary Report: Exposure to asbestos-containing vermiculite from Libby, Montana, at 28 processing sites in the United States (Summary Report) provides a review and analysis of what ATSDR and state health department partners learned during their evaluations of 28 sites that received asbestos-containing vermiculite from the Libby mine. This report (1) offers valuable information about facilities that exfoliated asbestos-containing vermiculite, (2) identifies groups who experienced exposure to asbestos from these sites, and (3) recommends re-evaluating existing data for former exfoliation sites where residual asbestos may be present. The report also proposes important public health activities to increase awareness about this type of asbestos exposure.

New! Download the Summary Report [PDF - 1.96MB]

New! Download the Summary Report Fact Sheet [PDF - 338KB]

Site-specific reports for 28 sites

ATSDR, in collaboration with state health department partners, conducted evaluations of 28 sites that received asbestos-containing vermiculite from a mine in Libby, Montana. These 28 site evaluations focused on potential past, current, and future pathways of exposure to the asbestos associated with vermiculite from the Libby mine. Most of the processing facilities at these sites operated for different time periods in the past, during the 1920s to the early 1990s.

ATSDR and state health partners produced a health consultation, a fact sheet, and media announcement for each of the 28 sites listed below.

Note: To view site location or additional information, use the Sites by Region table or click on the links below the map.

National Asbestos Exposure Review Phase 1 Sites Santa Ana, CA Los Angeles, CA Newark, CA Portland, OR (N. Harding Ave.) Portland, OR (N. Suttle Rd.) Spokane, WA Libby, MT Glendale, AZ Phoenix, AZ Honolulu, HI Dallas, TX New Orleans, LA Denver, CO Minot, ND Minneapolis, MN - Note: Leaving ATSDR Web Site Omaha, NE West Chicago, IL St. Louis, MO Wilder, KY Tampa, FL Marysville, OH Dearborn, MI New Castle, PA Ellwood City, PA Weedsport, NY East Hampton, MA Edgewater, NJ Trenton, NJ Beltsville, MD

* Denotes a site where an assessment of the prevalence of asbestos-related disease in former workers and their household contacts is ongoing. Reports on these assessments will be available on the agency website when they are completed.

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What is Vermiculite? Is All Vermiculite Hazardous?

Vermiculite ore is a naturally occurring mineral used widely in various consumer products, such as attic insulation, lawn and garden products, and fireproofing material.

Most vermiculite ore and products do not pose a health hazard. Vermiculite from Libby, Montana is of special concern because it contains asbestos.

Prolonged exposure to asbestos can cause very serious health problems, including asbestosis, mesothelioma, and lung cancer.

People who believe they have been exposed should consult a health care professional with expertise in asbestos related disease. Consult a doctor in your area or search the links available on the 'Other Resources' web page.

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Asbestos and Libby Vermiculite

Vermiculite was mined and processed in Libby, Montana, from the early 1920s through 1990.

The Libby mine is now closed, but many studies show that people who worked in the Libby mine or vermiculite processing facilities—and those who lived near these sites—were exposed to hazardous levels of asbestos while the facilities were in operation.

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