Asbest, Russia (population 70,000), is an asbestos-producing town, dominated by a huge mine owned by the company Uralasbest. The people of Asbest are dependent on the mine; 25 million Russians (total population 142 million) live in towns with only one main industry that cannot close due to this kind of economic relationship.
The mine in Asbest is half the size of Manhattan. From Dr. Mercola's recent newsletter: "The city’s pride for the industry can be seen in large asbestos-promoting banners hung all over town. Asbest even has an asbestos-themed anthem and a monument made of asbestos, symbolizing the city’s strange admiration for the deadly carcinogen. The first place [documentary reporter] Larsson visits is the asbestos mine, where half a million tons of asbestos are mined each year." Locals say they are unafraid of the dangers of asbestos: "Things happen to you only when you are afraid of them.”
Asbestos is a fibrous mineral whose use dates back to ancient Greece, where people made wicks from it to burn eternal flames, and wove it into garments, napkins and table cloths, which they would throw into the fire, marveling at how clean and unburned the cloth remained.
Watch this documentary, and read more here: