Olena Chapovalov (640x613)OCRC: Occupational Cancer Research Centre

Posted on February 25, 2014: ADAO Delivered Keynote Address at the OCRC Occupational Lung Cancer Symposium 

Posted on July 31, 2014

I was delighted to interview Olena Chapovalov for our July eNewsletter.

Olena and I met at the Occupational Lung Cancer Symposium on February 24, 2014. When she learned about workers fighting for the right to a safe work environment around the world, she graciously offered to help ADAO by translating the top 5 asbestos facts from English to Russian.  Russia mines 1,000,000 tons of asbestos each year – that’s 50% of the worlds’ production! In Olena’s words: “Sharing is caring – and I truly believe that when we share information, particularly around awareness, we not only show that we care but also save lives!”


Linda: Why did you offer to help the Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization?

Olena: After learning about ADAO and your work, I felt it was important for me to contribute to your tremendous efforts specific to raising awareness and prevention of asbestos-related diseases around the world.  I couldn’t believe that in our day and age, with all the knowledge about asbestos and the health risks associated with this hazardous material, people in some countries continue to put their health and life at risk.  It astonished me how governments can do so little to protect workers from harm and allow these unsafe work practices.

Russian and English 5 Facts BORDERLinda: Did you learn any new facts from my OCRC (Occupational Cancer Research Centre) keynote on February 24, 2014?

Olena: Linda, your presentation at the OCRC conference on February 24, 2014 was instrumental in opening my eyes to the magnitude of the asbestos problem around the world.  It was particularly painful to hear about the enormous asbestos production in Russia!  As a person of Russian background, I felt it was my duty to help ADAO in whatever capacity I could to help raise awareness and stop the deaths and disease caused by asbestos exposure in Russia, and elsewhere.

Linda: Was it difficult to translate the top five facts into Russian?

Olena: Overall it was not difficult to translate the top five facts into Russian.  However, the challenge was around making the language clear and strong enough for everyone to understand what is being communicated.

 Linda: What is your personal message to those who work in the Uralasbest asbestos mine in Russia?

Olena: For those who work in the asbestos mine in Russia, I want them to know that there are people who really care about their health, safety and well-being.  ADAO is an example of such caring and concerned people who want to help workers around the world live longer and healthier lives.  We understand that sometimes circumstances leave us very little choice but to work in highly unsafe environments, placing our health and well-being at risk.  But with the work that ADAO is doing, we want you to know that you do have a choice and you have a voice! Nothing is more important than your health and safety.  Our goal is to help you find ways of making your work environment safer so you can enjoy a happy, disease-free life!


  1. Установленно что асбест – это канцероген и не существует безопасного уровня вредного воздействия на организм человека.  Большему риску подвержены люди которые жили или работали в районе добычи асбеста.
  2.  Заболевания связаные с асбестом могут не проявляться сразу, а только спустя 10-15 лет после того как человек был в контакте с асбестом.
  3.  Всемирная Организация Охраны Здоровья установила, что более107,000 человек погибает ежегодно от заболеваний вызванных асбестом. Такие заболевания как рак легких, мезотелиома и асбестоз возникают в результате от воздействия асбеста на работе.
  4.  Хризотил-асбест состовляет около 95% всего добываемого на шахтах и идущего на экспорт асбеста. В 2012 году, самое большое колличество асбеста было произведенно в России, Китае, Бразилии и Казахстане.
  5.  Существует несколько типов безопасных заменителей асбеста.


  1. Asbestos is a known human carcinogen and there is no safe level of asbestos exposure.
  2. Asbestos-caused diseases have a 10 – 50 year latency period from initial exposure to development of disease.
  3. The World Health Organization estimates “more than 107,000 people die each year from asbestos-related lung cancer, mesothelioma and asbestosis resulting from occupational exposures.”
  4. Chrysotile asbestos accounts for nearly 95% of asbestos mined and exported today. The top four asbestos-producing countries were Russia, China, Brazil, and Kazakhstan in 2012.
  5. There are numerous proven substitutes for asbestos products.

Olena re-enforces, “Together, Change is Possible.”


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