Flanders pours €3.85 million into asbestos removal in 200 schools
Share article:
Share article:

Flanders pours €3.85 million into asbestos removal in 200 schools

Flemish climate minister Zuhal Demir (N-VA). © Belga

The Flemish Government is putting €3.85 million towards asbestos removal in 200 schools across the region of Flanders, according to a press release from Flemish Minister of Environment Zuhal Demir.

Additionally, 780 extra asbestos inventories will be carried out in school buildings over the next four years.

Both initiatives are part of the Flemish goal to be asbestos-safe by 2040.

“[Asbestos] is still very common in our buildings and on our roofs,” said Demir.

“We are now allocating an unprecedentedly large budget for it, which will benefit the quality of life and health of many people.”

Demir hopes that the asbestos removal efforts will also provide much needed work for those in the construction sector, which she says “can use all the push it can get” after being hit by the coronavirus crisis.

“This way we ensure more roof and facade renovations in Flanders, which in addition to lowering people’s energy bills, also provides additional employment for the construction sector and reduces emissions,” Demir said.

The extra resources were welcomed by Flemish Minister of Education Ben Weyts.

“Asbestos in school buildings is an unhealthy legacy from the past,” said Weyts.

“The Flemish Government is not responsible for that legacy, but it is taking responsibility for eliminating the problem step by step. In recent years, we have already intervened in many hundreds of schools and much more is in the pipeline. We also continue to encourage schools to better identify the problem and tackle it faster.”

More than 1,700 schools have already applied for asbestos inventory and removal.

The additional funding will allow for 780 asbestos inventories and 200 asbestos removals in schools at half the expected cost in the next four years.

Apart from school buildings, there have already been record amounts of home asbestos removal in the whole of Flanders, along with asbestos removal in youth centres via the local authorities, according to Demir’s office.

The extra money for the removal of asbestos comes from the Relanceplan Vlaamse Veerkracht, or Flemish Resilience Relay Plan.

Latest news

Belgium considers relaxing testing rules for UK travellers
At the next Consultative Committee meeting, Belgium will look into relaxing the testing and entry policy for travellers coming from the United ...
Jette libraries start giving plants away with books
Visitors to libraries in the Brussels municipality of Jette will soon be able to pick up a free plant along with a book, thanks to the new Plantotek ...
‘Do what you want, but do it as safely as possible,’ experts warn
As the daily number of new coronavirus infections exceeds 3,000 for the first time since May, infectious disease expert Erika Vlieghe and ...
‘We’re running dry’: Brussels teacher shortage reaches critical levels
The teacher shortage in Brussels is affecting schools across language borders, according to Brussels’ Minister for Multilingualism and Dutch ...
Belgium in Brief: Getting To The Airport
When I saw the news of plans for a tram line and cycle path to connect Brussels' outskirts to the airport, my first reaction was sheer joy.  Let ...
EU should invest €5 trillion in climate plan, says State Secretary for Economic Recovery
The European Union must invest €5 trillion in its climate plan over the next decade to "retain its credibility as a political project," according ...
Brussels café managers ask for security guards following stabbing over vaccination proof
Managers of cafes in Brussels are asking to be provided with security guards if they’re to continue enforcing rules surrounding proof of vaccination, ...
1.6 tonnes of drugs, 27 suspects: Belgian police bust major gang
The Belgian police and public prosecutor's office arrested 27 suspects and seized 1.6 tonnes of drugs, over €80,000 and a number of weapons in a ...
75% more sexual violence victims seek help in Brussels since summer
There has been a 75% increase in the number of people asking for help from the Brussels Centre for the Treatment of Sexual Violence (CPVS) since the ...
European Commission outlines possible action against the rule of law crisis in Poland
In a speech at the European Parliament plenary on Tuesday morning, Commission president Ursula von der Leyen listed three options for action against ...
PFOS contamination found in air around 3M factory
Months after unsafe levels of the chemical PFOS were discovered in the water and soil in the vicinity of a 3M factory in Antwerp, in addition to in ...
Belgium is global leader in plastic recycling and bioplastic innovations
Belgium is among the best-performing countries when it comes to innovation in plastic recycling and researching alternative plastics technologies, an ...