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Asbestos News

Former Libby asbestos plant transformed into mountaintop park
The healing process for residents of Libby, Montana, has taken a big step in recent months, as the former W.R. Grace and Co. vermiculite plant site has been converted into a new town park, The Associated Press reports.

According to the news source, the mining town - which consists of approximately 3,000 people - has been hit hard by exposure to asbestos from the Grace plant and nearby mine. Overall, estimates indicate that 400 people in the area have been killed by asbestos-related illnesses, while another 1,700 have become sick.

With the symptoms of asbestos-related diseases like asbestosis, malignant mesothelioma and lung cancer often not manifesting themselves for decades, the illnesses are still being diagnosed more than two decades after the mine was shut down, the news source said.

Libby Mayor Doug Roll noted that the freshly planted grass and trees represented the start of a new era for residents.

"It's sort of like Phoenix rising from the ashes," Roll told the news source. "We've had a lot of negative stuff going on and we're trying to turn that around."
7/18/12

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