Asbestos was used in ancient times already by the Greeks and the Romans. Around 1900, during the Industrial Revolution, the mining of asbestos really got going. But it was only after World War II that asbestos was being used on a large scale in the Netherlands. Since 1980, the use of asbestos has been increasingly restricted, until the use of asbestos in products was banned altogether in 1993.
Asbestos is often used because of its valuable properties. It is fire-resistant, durable, insulative and easy to use. Asbestos has probably been used in over 3,000 products, at some point. Apart from that, it is often used in buildings such as factories, houses and sheds, and in trains, cars and ships.
Asbestos may also occur in debris and soil. In some occasions it has been used to pave roads.
Some of the most frequent uses of asbestos are: