The Park Place Economist


Asbestos is a fiberlike insulation material that causes cancer and respiratory diseases, namely mesothelioma and asbestosis (Times, 1994). The victims of asbestos, which include people of all occupations, fiom asbestos-textile workers to secretaries at public schools, have no hope for a cure for their illness which causes extreme pain and possibly death for its victims. It has been estimated that some 200,000 asbestos-related claims have been resolved thus far, with 200,000 more still pending and 50 to 60 new claims being filed each day (Snyder, 1994). This paper will explore asbestos issues by looking at the history of the asbestos problem, recent events in the industry, and how the problem is changing.