Ambra Hyskaj, Erzsébet Harman-Tóth, Boglárka A. Topa, László E. Aradi, Donald Deda, Tamás G. Weiszburg
Naturally occurring asbestos (NOA) and possible health risk has not been studied in Albania during the last 20 years, though unwanted „mineral resources” are large due to the frequence of ophiolites. This study evaluates earlier exploration findings in terms of modern (local) mineral identification, environmental occurrence, behavior in the host environment and transport towards a risk assessment on asbestos exposure. At NOA outcrops soil, sediment, air and rock samples were collected. Optical microscopy, XPD, Raman spectroscopy and SEM-EDS were used to identify fibers. Asbestos was found at all outcrop locations, but not at all outcrop-distanced locations. Chrysotile was present at all locations; tremolite was found only in Boboshticë. Not all fibrous materials were regulated asbestos, so only macroscopic observations may result in the overestimation of health hazard. A multiple approach on the identification of asbestiform minerals is essential towards a correct risk assessment and successful prevention of human disease and life-threatening events.
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