Skip directly to search Skip directly to A to Z list Skip directly to navigation Skip directly to page options Skip directly to site content

Naturally Occurring Asbestos

Historical Document

This web site is provided by the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) ONLY as an historical reference for the public health community. It is no longer being maintained and the data it contains may no longer be current and/or accurate.

The term “naturally occurring asbestos” refers to the mineral as a natural component of soils or rocks as opposed to asbestos in commercial products, mining or processing operations. Naturally occurring asbestos can be released from rocks or soils by routine human activities, such as construction, or natural weathering processes. If naturally occurring asbestos is not disturbed and fibers are not released into the air, then it is not a health risk.

The materials are organized into three sections:

What Everyone Should Know
Basic information about naturally occurring asbestos, its health effects, and ways to limit exposure

Health Care Professional Information
Clinical overview, toxicological studies, screening guidelines, and patient materials

Where is Naturally Occurring Asbestos Found?
Asbestos mineralogy, maps, and indicators of potential exposure are presented.