Thank you, Minister.
I'll start by indicating that the health and safety of Canadian Armed Forces members, our DND civilians, as well as the public is the priority for the Department of National Defence. Since 1987 we have been ensuring that asbestos-containing materials are not used in new construction or any major renovations. We have developed policies and procedures as well with respect to asbestos, ensuring health and safety for all our personnel.
With respect to the asbestos you mentioned, it was found October 26 when we were working on hangar 7. There is an ongoing construction project there to repurpose a portion of the hangar. Asbestos was a known risk, and all the appropriate monitoring and procedures were in place.
In the initial assessment, it was determined that the heating, ventilation, and air conditioning system needed to be cleaned, and during that process some airborne asbestos had been detected. Certainly, the area was immediately shut down to test, and the appropriate measures were put in place to manage it. It was determined that it was surface asbestos dust. The proper cleanup is under way, and the appropriate monitoring is ongoing.