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Thursday, February 20, 2014

Future Environment Designs Sponsoring PACNY's 18th Annual Environmental Conference #FEDTCPACNY

Future Environment Designs is looking forward to attending the Professional Abatement Contractors of New York (PACNY) 18th Annual Environmental Conference being held at the Turning Stone Resort and Casino from Wednesday, February 26 till Friday, February 28, 2014.  As has become our habit we will be at the tradeshow with our display booth and brochures.  However, this year you will see someone new at our booth.  Come by the booth and meet the newest member of our team Kimberly Granmoe.  Ms. Granmoe is from the Plattsburgh area of New York, and has been increasing our presence in the North Country.  Ms. Granmoe has worked for several companies in the Plattsburgh area and has served our country in the United States Marine Corp as a Desert Storm Vet (earning the Good Conduct Medal & National Defense Ribbon).
Turning Stone Resort & Casino is Beautiful in Winter
Angelo Garcia, III is proud to be on the discussion panel on Friday with Special Guest Christopher Alonge, PE and moderated by Kevin Hutton.  The panel will be after Dr. Eileen Franco, of the NYS Department of Labor (NYSDOL), who will be discussing the "Annual DOL Update" including the NYSDOL's current initiatives to educate the Code Enforcement Officers across the State and explain the enforcement strategies and statistics.

New this year to the Environmental Conference is an additional day meant for training providers and trainers.  Mr. Kevin Malone MPH, Director of the NYS Department of Health's (NYSDOH's) Asbestos Safety Training Program, will be discussing an "Overview of the Asbestos Training Program" including DOH training trends and initiatives.

The conference promises to be very informative as usual with Craig Benedict Assistant US Attorney discussing "Current Enforcement of the Clean Air Act and the Asbestos Work Practice Standard"; and Dr. Barry Castleman discussing the "The Current Global Asbestos Trade".  Visit PACNY's website for the conference flyer and registration information.

As we did last year, we will be posting updates on our twitter feed ( with the hashtag #FEDTCPACNY.  We hope to see you there this year, come down to the booth and say hello.
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Tuesday, February 04, 2014

Protecting Yourself During Restoration or Renovation Projects

Many of you know one of our main issues is protecting yourself and your family from the contaminants that you can be exposed to in construction work (including remodeling, restoration, or renovation work).  In our classes, we discuss the USA Today Special Report in 2000 "Workers unwittingly take home toxins".  This report discusses how workers through the years have been exposed to toxins and brought them home to contaminate their families.  Contaminates included asbestos, lead, mercury, radiation, animal growth hormones, dry cleaning chemicals, explosive toxins and carcinogens.  It has been our opinion for years, that the standard safety equipment for construction workers should also include disposable clothing or uniforms, that are left at the jobsite, and respirators.  This would be in addition to the typical hard hat, reflective vests, and safety shoes.  The new silica standard, if it goes through, will be interesting since it will probably require respirators for workers performing dusty tasks.

We have also discussed, in our classes, the emergency workers who worked at the Ground Zero site and all the different toxins they were exposed to like: asbestos, lead, dioxin, volatile organic compounds (VOCs), mercury, silica, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs).  Some of these workers are so sick that we had to provide special medical coverage through the Zadroga Bill, costing the US billions of dollars.

Old House
Old House (Photo credit: WaywardShinobi)
To further prove our point, a recent Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR) News Synopsis for January 2, 2014 discussed a Histoplasmosis Outbreak Associated with the Renovation of an Old House in Quebec Canada.  Histoplasmosis is a respiratory disease caused by the inhalation of fungus spores excreted by bats and birds, that can persist in the environment for several years.  Outbreaks can occur during demolition/renovation activities that create dust containing bird or bat droppings.  The MMWR outbreak happened during the renovation of an old house, 30 workers and residents were exposed to dust containing bird or bat droppings previously hidden in the brick walls.  14 of the workers/residents developed symptoms of histoplasmosis.  Of the four who were laboratory-confirmed, two were hospitalized.  Unfortunately, stories like this keep happening over and over, again.
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Chrysotile Asbestos Banned? More Like Certain Conditions of Use Will Be Eventually Banned!

Many of you, as did I, read about the " Ban of Chrysotile Asbestos " and rejoiced over something long overdue.  However, after rea...