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Asbestos violation in Rosemount will cost U of M

Asbestos violations at two locations, including UMore Park in Rosemount, will cost the University of Minnesota $10,000 in fines and $50,000 for an environmental project.

The University reached an agreement with the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency on Jan. 22.

During World War II the UMore property was home to a government-owned gunpowder facility that included more than 900 buildings. Those buildings were demolished before the land was sold the university but according to the MPCA building debris left behind included a building paneling material that included asbestos. That material can release asbestos fibers if it is crumbled, pulverized or reduced to a powder. Reacting to a complaint in September of 2007 the MPCA inspected about 170 acres of the site where crews had been removing trees and brush. Inspectors found several pieces of the asbestos-containing material in the ground and on remaining concrete foundations.

The other violation was on the University-owned Centennial Showboat.

As part of its agreement with the MPCA the university will pay $50,000 for a study of Minnesota mining workers' health issues, including mesothelioma.