Major asbestos regulations
Asbestos can be hazardous to your health. That is why the Dutch government is establishing regulations governing its use and when it should be removed. For instance, the government intends to ban asbestos roofs as of 2024.
Asbestos no longer used in new products
Private individuals and companies may no longer use or reuse asbestos, or store, sell, import, give away, reapply or process asbestos. This has applied in the Netherlands since 1 July 1993 and throughout the European union since 2005. New products must not contain asbestos because asbestos fibres can cause life-threatening diseases if inhaled.
Replacing your asbestos roof
The older an asbestos roof is, the greater the danger that asbestos fibres are being released. It is therefore advisable to remove your asbestos roof. The government is working towards implementing a ban on asbestos roofs. If this ban goes ahead, asbestos roofs will be prohibited with effect from 2024.
Planning to replace your asbestos roof? Note that the following rules apply:
- Owners themselves are responsible for the removal of their asbestos roof.
- You submit a demolition notification to the local authority where you live. Are you hiring a certified asbestos abatement company? If so, ask that company to submit the demolition notification to the local authority for you.
- Are you considering removing asbestos-containing material yourself? If so, first read the requirements and tips on the Milieu Centraal website (only available in Dutch), because DIY removal is not always allowed. In certain cases, you are required to hire a certified asbestos abatement company. A few examples:
- your asbestos roof is already damaged;
- your asbestos roof is larger than 35m2;
- your roof has asbestos-containing slate tiles;
- your asbestos roof is part of a commercial property.
- Stichting Ascert (Foundation for Asbestos Certification) manages the register on which you can find Dutch certified asbestos abatement companies near you (this website is in Dutch, but you can use the map or enter your Dutch zip/post code and press the red 'Zoeken' button).
- You can apply for a grant to have your asbestos roof removed. You do, however, need to meet the requirements. The most important requirement is that the asbestos roof you want to have removed by a certified asbestos abatement company is larger than 35m2. The grant programme applies to households, companies, nonprofit organisations and authorities.
To find out exactly what you should do, read the comprehensive step-by-step plan: what should I do if I discover asbestos?.
What exactly is an asbestos roof?
The ban will only apply to asbestos-containing material that is in contact with the open air.
If you have questions about what exactly falls within the definition of an asbestos roof, contact the Helpdesk of Dutch Knowledge Center InfoMil.
What else can contain asbestos?
Asbestos can be found in all kinds of materials and products that date from prior to 1994. For example, cement, heating systems, linoleum and warming plates. The Infomil website has photos of a range of products containing asbestos (website in Dutch, the links below the page lead to pictures of all kinds of examples).
Do you want to be certain whether or not something contains asbestos? If so, hire a certified asbestos abatement company to perform an asbestos survey and draw up a report. If you find asbestos, also refer to the asbestos step-by-step plan.
Non-hazardous asbestos: asbestos management plan
Does your asbestos survey report show that there is asbestos in another material in the building, such as cement? And are no plans in place to demolish or renovate the building? If the material cannot be easily damaged, it is usually safe to leave it alone. The asbestos fibres cannot be released so the material is best left undisturbed. It is, however, advisable for the building owner to set down and evaluate any possible risks to workers. This can be done in and asbestos management plan, for example, so that there is clarity regarding the continued safe use of the building.
Local authorities inform and enforce
Your local authority may have additional rules in place. Always make sure you obtain information from them.
Your local authority may impose a fine for the removal of your asbestos roof. This will apply if the roof is already severely damaged.