EPA to Test New Asbestos Removal Method on Vacant Apartment Building
The EPA’s decision to test a new asbestos removal method on a vacant Fort Worth apartment building has resident’s worried about possible exposure risks.
The apartments located are located in the Woodhaven neighborhood between Arlington and Fort Worth in an area that has struggled recently with crime and other problems. The decision to use Woodhaven for the test has some officials claiming “environmental racism.”
Normally asbestos is removed before a building demolished, however the test method involves soaking the structure with specially treated water and demolishing the building with the asbestos intact.
One member of the Texas House of Representatives was unaware of any other tests using this method other than one performed on an abandoned army base. The lawmaker suggested that the EPA should perform further testing on industrial or commercial sites before trying it in a residential area.
Fort Worth’s environmental management director insists that the method is safe and that because the EPA is heavily subsidizing the demolition process, the city has less of a financial burden when redeveloping vacant properties that contain asbestos.