Waste containing asbestos

Asbestos is a mineral crystal with fibrous structure. There are six (6) basic types of asbestos: actinolite, anthophyllite, tremolite, crocidolite (blue), chrysotile (white) and amosite (brown). The most often used asbestos material in the Republic of Croatia used to be chrysotile, which is the least dangerous from the ones listed.
Having regard to its very good properties, asbestos used to be added to various products in order to enhance their mechanical and chemical properties, and resistance to water, fire, heat, noise, electricity, wear and tear and friction.
It is considered that over years-long processing and use of asbestos minerals in several thousand products (for example, plastering mortar, insulation material, façade cladding, flat and corrugated roofing sheets, wall and floor tiles, roofing tiles, brick, cement water pipes, asbestos gaskets, brake disks, fire blankets, working gloves, asbestos roofing boards, sealing compounds, etc.), there is at least one or several types of asbestos fibres.
Most of them are in use even today, although with due care and under strict control since there is no replacement technical material. Asbestos is used in shipyards, spacecraft electrical industry, hospitals, schools, libraries, state institutions’ buildings, office buildings, companies, houses, buildings, and in many other industries.
However, studies have shown that asbestos particles, the so-called asbestos dust, contain needle-like fibres which are released into the air (asbestos emission), and which after a certain period of time can cause in people, due to their coming into contact with them in the industry or immediate vicinity, serious chronic disease (asbestosis), and even death.
The prohibition of manufacturing, marketing and use of asbestos and materials containing asbestos in the Republic of Croatian entered into force on 1 January 2006.
In the previous years, the Environmental Protection and Energy Efficiency Fund financially supported the system of management of construction waste containing asbestos, by reimbursing the authorised collectors for the cost incurred by accepting this type of waste from the citizens. However, the entire system of construction waste management has to be reorganised in a comprehensive and systematic manner, which will be possible only after certain prerequisites are fulfilled. For the purpose of further financing, it is necessary, under the Act on Sustainable Waste Management, to adopt a regulation pursuant to which the Fund will start collecting the charge for the disposal of construction waste. These dedicated funds would provide the resources for financing the system of management of construction waste containing asbestos and co-financing the construction of civic amenity sites (recycling yards) for construction waste.

 This does not mean that the citizens cannot properly dispose of asbestos waste through their utility companies since 17 landfills in Croatia have the cells for the disposal of this type of waste. In addition, according to the provisions of the Ordinance on waste management, the citizens can dispose at the civic amenity site up to 200 kg of this type of waste once every 6 months. Likewise, pursuant to the provisions of the Ordinance, the units of local self-government are obliged to compensate in full the entity managing the amenity site (in most cases the utility company) the costs of management of construction waste containing asbestos generated in the households of the users of their services