NSW set to ban engineered stone benchtops by end of 2023

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The New South Wales Premier Chris Minns said a state ban may be announced for the use of silica-engineered stone if a national agreement isn’t reached by the end of 2023.

NSW Industrial Relations Minister Sophie Cotsis told a budget estimates hearing on Wednesday that the government would consider abandoning plans for a national ban of the deadly product, if the agreement isn’t reached prior to the end of the year.

Ms Costis said she supported banning the product “as soon as possible” and said it had been “a long time coming.”

benchtop
An investigation which took place earlier this year found an increased number of workers battling the debilitating symptoms of silicosis. Photo: Nine News.

“We need to get this right at a national level. We don’t want to see this drag out like what happened with asbestos,” Ms Cotsis said.

According to The Sydney Morning Herald, state and territory ministers were criticised last month after they failed to announce a ban on the deadly engineered stone responsible for a health epidemic among tradies.

State-based regulators were found to have failed to effectively examine workplaces for the crystalline silica dust found in the stone used in kitchen benchtops.

Statistics showed the engineered stone can contain up to 95 per cent crystalline silica and is responsible for a surge in lung disease in stonemasons and other tradespeople. 

Source: Sydney Morning Herald.

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