Main asbestos regulations
Asbestos can be a health hazard. That is why Dutch authorities regulate its use and removal. Recently the government proposed a bill to ban asbestos roofs as of 31 December 2024. But the bill did not make it through the Senate.
Asbestos no longer used in new products
As of 1 July 1993 individuals and businesses in the Netherlands are not allowed to use, reuse, store, sell, import, repurpose, treat or give away asbestos. In 2005 a similar ban was introduced across the entire European Union. New products are not allowed to contain asbestos because, when breathed in, asbestos fibres can cause life-threatening diseases.
Replacing your asbestos roof
The older an asbestos roof is, the greater the risk that it will release fibres. Anyone with an asbestos roof is therefore advised to have it removed.
If you are planning to replace your asbestos roof, keep the following in mind:
- Responsibility for the removal of an asbestos roof lies with the building’s owners.
- You must submit a demolition notice (in Dutch) to your local authorities beforehand. If you will be using a licensed asbestos removal company, ask them to submit the demolition notification for you.
- If you plan on removing asbestos-containing material yourself, consult the Milieu Centraal website (in Dutch) before doing so to make sure that’s allowed. In some cases, you must use a licensed asbestos removal company. For example:
- if the roof is damaged;
- if the roof is larger than 35m2;
- if the roof is made of asbestos-containing tiles, bitumen or corrugated sheets;
- if the roof is on a commercial property.
- You can find a licensed asbestos removal company near you on the Stichting Ascert website (in Dutch).
- For more detailed information, read the step-by-step plan on what to do if you discover asbestos.
- In certain situations, you may be able to get a grant to remove your asbestos roof .
Other asbestos-containing materials and products
Prior to 1994 asbestos was used in a variety of different materials and products, including cement, linoleum, heating systems and hot plates. Photos of products containing asbestos are available on the InfoMil website (in Dutch).
To know for certain whether something contains asbestos, have a licensed asbestos removal company carry out an asbestos survey and draw up a report. Again, if you find asbestos, consult the step-by-step plan for what to do in that situation.
Asbestos management plan for non-hazardous asbestos
If the results of the asbestos survey show that there is asbestos-containing material (like cement) in the building and there are no plans to tear down or renovate the building, it may be safe to leave the material where it is. Asbestos-containing material that isn’t easily damaged won’t release asbestos fibres and does not usually pose a health risk. But it is still a good idea for building owners to identify and assess any possible risks. And to draw up an asbestos management plan with clear information on how the building can be used safely.
Always ask your municipality for more information
Your municipality may have additional regulations on asbestos. For example, some local authorities require building owners to remove a severely damaged asbestos roof or face a fine. So always ask your municipality for information if you find asbestos on your property.