As goes the Colorado review process for other regulations, Colorado's Reg 8, which is the regulation for monitoring and removal of asbestos containing materials, is under review and undergoing editing and changes.
Steve Fine, Manager of Indoor Environmental Program stated, "The Department of Regulatory Agencies (DORA) published their findings and recommendations in their report “2012 Sunset Review: Colorado Asbestos Control Act” on October 15, 2012. DORA recommended continuation of the program, and that the next sunset review take place in 2022."
When asked his opinion about the continuation of the program, Steve Fine stated difinitively, "Asbestos is a known carcinogen. With that in mind, the Colorado legislature declared that it is in the best interest of the general public to control exposure to asbestos and I believe the most effective way we can accomplish that is through the continuation of Colorado’s existing asbestos program."
As the commission reviews the Regulation, there are other factors at play. The regulation is undergoing changes that affect consultants, contractors, the restoration industry and any other industry that may deal with construction materials, including plumbers, electricians and developers. Not everyone who has dealings with asbestos wants Reg 8 to continue. There are many in the Restoration industry and the Remodeling industry who would like the regulation to go away. In the event that Reg 8 did not continue, that does not mean a free pass. EPA regulations are and will remain in affect as will OSHA laws. The biggest problem with this alternative regulatory agency, is oversight and enforcement. Region 8 of the EPA oversees EPA regulatory adherence. They are often overworked and stretched thin and must put their focus on bigger cases, which will lead to unsafe work practices, a higher risk for public health risks.
Asbestos is, as Steve Fine put it, a known carcinogen. Although symptoms of exposure may not show up for decades, the illness caused is most always terminal. The most common known diseases are Asbestosis and Mesothelioma. There are other risks for asbestos exposure, including abdominal and lung cancers and more.
There is little doubt that asbestos is deadly. There are many contractors and consultants who work in the asbestos abatement industry who can help you if you believe that you may have asbestos in your home or business. You can find many listed on the CDPHE website, or go to the Colorado Environmental Professionals Association website, or CEPA for a list of members in good standing.
The regulation will move forward through reviews and changes. There will be debates and stakeholders who will weigh in their opinions.
To see the proposed changes to the regulation visit CDPHE's website. Revisions to Colorado Regulation No. 8, Part B, are scheduled as follows:
"The Asbestos Program plans to resume the stakeholder meetings in the Spring. When these meetings conclude we will finalize the proposed revisions to Regulation No. 8, Part B, and submit them to the Air Quality Control Commission." Steve Fine explained.
"We are on the Air Quality Control Commission’s calendar for a Request for Hearing in November 21, 2013. If the Commission grants our request, a Rulemaking Hearing would be scheduled for February 20, 2014."