PDC 105

Asbestos and Other Fibrous Materials: Risk Assessment, Characterization, Communication

intermediate | Credits: 8 CM Credit Hours / 0.8 CEU / 0.5 CMP
Saturday, May 21 | 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Limit: 60


International, Occupational and Environmental Epidemiology, Risk Assessment and Management


In the 21st century, asbestos remains a serious occupational and environmental hazard. Many facilities face hazards and elevated risks for workers related to fibrous minerals, not fitting into the traditional definition of asbestos, but similar in characteristics and potential health effects (like Libby amphibole or fibrous zeolites). This PDC is designed to educate IH professionals on state-of-the-art approaches to exposure assessment and risk modeling for mineral fibers of different types, with special emphasis on practical applications and implications for effective risk communication. Practitioners will be led through case studies to determine potential health outcomes based on the various approaches and models. The most recent epidemiological information will be discussed to provide an enhanced understanding of risk assessment principles and limitations. Exposure assessment and reconstruction will be illustrated with various examples. Excel spreadsheets will be introduced for advanced risk calculations. Special attention will be paid to models used for asbestos exposure-response analysis that will allow participants to better understand the basis for various risk assessment equations and their importance for industrial hygiene practitioners.


Familiarity with the fundamentals of IH, and the basic concepts of mathematical statistics.

Learning Aids

Participants must bring a laptop.

Value Added

An asbestos risk assessment spreadsheet will be provided.


Upon completion, participants will be able to:

  • Demonstrate and discuss the role of asbestos and other fibrous minerals in current industrial hygiene practice.
  • Evaluate asbestos exposure levels in typical situations.
  • Use Excel spreadsheets for asbestos risk assessment calculations.
  • Distinguish advantages and disadvantages of different asbestos risk assessment models.
  • Enhance EPA asbestos health risk assessment by using non-linear and asbestos fiber type/dimensionality specific methods/protocols.
  • Identify uncertainties associated with the exposure assessment and epidemiological processes.
  • Choose various strategies of effective asbestos-related risk communications.


  • Definition of asbestos and applicability to other elongated mineral particles
  • Exposures to elongated mineral particles
  • Asbestos health effects and pathological findings
  • Epidemiological data for risk assessment
  • Basics of asbestos exposure assessment
  • Models and metrics for asbestos health risk assessment
  • Risk assessment Excel spreadsheet
  • Case studies and discussion
  • Validation and interpretation of the results
  • Facilitated group works on risk communication
  • Q&A, class discussion

Transfer of Knowledge

Instructors will evaluate participants understanding of the materials presented based on:

  • Hands-on demonstrations and practicum
  • Practice exercises

 Course Survey Link: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/16PDC105

Sponsoring Committee

International Affairs, Risk Assessment