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Margaret Henderson's blog

Nebraska Uses Map Series to Inform Public About Radon

by Margaret Henderson

The Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services advises that Nebraska has a very high incidence of elevated radon levels in homes. Half of the tests taken have had results greater than the recommended action level of 4 pCi/L.

In order to aid the public in understanding the incidence of elevated radon levels throughout the state, a series of maps have been provided.

The maps show:

· Average radon concentrations by county - showing that a majority of the counties in Nebraska have radon levels exceeding 4 pCi/L;

· Highest radon results by county – showing that seven counties have results more than 100 pCi/L; and

· Number of homes tested by county – showing that three counties have more than 2000 homes tested.

See the radon maps at http://dhhs.ne.gov/Pages/Radon-Data.aspx

IAEA Safety Report on "Design and Conduct of Indoor Radon Surveys"

A new IAEA Safety Report entitled “Design and Conduct of Indoor Radon Surveys” is now available.

California Radon Program Provides Resources to Health Care Providers

by Margaret Henderson

California Department of Public Health Indoor Radon Program features resources for health care providers regarding radon exposure and health consequences. The Program encourages physicians to ask their patients about radon exposure and testing.

A link is given for Breathing Easier - Iowa Cancer Consortium, stating that the website “is an incredible resource for Health Care Practitioners and includes videos, brochure templates, and a curated list of research and published articles.”

Featured videos on the website are by the Iowa Cancer Consortium, and a webinar by Dr. Bill Fields on radon and lung cancer.

An additional reference given is to the archives on the Radon Toxicity Case Study. This is available through the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry's Case Studies in Environmental Medicine Program.

Additional resources for physicians are provided from the American Lung Association and the Environmental Protection Agency.

Kansas Radon Newsletter, August 2019, Provides News to the Public

by Margaret Henderson

Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) Radon Program has published its August 2019 Kansas Radon Newsletter. The Newsletter provides information and current events, including a notice on the International Radon Symposium (held early September in Denver). Announcements on training are included regarding the radon entry-level and continuing education training to the Kansas radon industry that Kansas State offers. Information on the radon chamber device spiking services that Kansas State also offers is provided. Other training noted is the free radon training for real estate professionals and training options for training related to schools and other large buildings provided by the Midwest Universities Radon Consortium (MURC) regional radon training center at Kansas State University.

Save The Date! Region 8 Radon Stakeholders' Meeting: March 26 & 27, 2020 in Helena, Montana

You are cordially invited to attend the EPA Region 8 Radon Stakeholders’ Meeting. The first day of the meeting will focus on topics related to those who have a stake in protecting the public from exposure to radon in their homes, schools, and businesses. The second day will offer continuing education courses.

EPA Region 8 and its partners, Montana Dept. of Environmental Quality, Colorado Dept. of Public Health and Environment, North Dakota Dept. of Health, South Dakota Dept. of Environment and Natural Resources, Utah Dept. of Environmental Quality and the Wyoming Dept. of Health seek to bring interested stakeholders together to discuss common issues and understand them from other perspectives, provide insight into the future, share, educate, and network. We believe that meetings such as this will better provide all of us with ways to assist the public and reduce radon exposures.

Idaho Lesson Plan and Resources on Radon for Educators Provided

by Margaret Henderson

Idaho Department of Health and Welfare, Indoor Environment Program has Idaho Resources for Educators that include information about radon. https://healthandwelfare.idaho.gov/Health/EnvironmentalHealth/IndoorEnvironment/Radon/tabid/939/Default.aspx

A PowerPoint presentation of 27 slides about “Radon in Idaho” states its purpose: “…is meant to be used as a template in educating students about radon. You may use all the slides, or select the ones that best fit the needs of your students. We ask that you do not change the content within the presentation.”

The learning objectives are given as:

· Describe radon and its health effects.

· Explain how radon enters homes and how to test for it.

· Interpret radon test results.

Montana Guidance on Radon and Real Estate Transactions

by Margaret Henderson

The Montana Department of Environmental Quality Indoor Radon Program provides extensive information for home buyers on its website under the section “Radon Testing – Real Estate.” See http://deq.mt.gov/Energy/radon In Montana, the average for indoor air is 5.9 pCi/L, above the 4 pCi/L recommended action level. Levels of test results for Montana Counties are shown at http://mt-radon.info/MT_counties.html.

Indiana State Department of Health Uses Mapping to Indicate Radon Potential Exposure

by Margaret Henderson

The Indiana State Department of Health, Lead and Healthy Homes Division, provides information to the public about radon and its health effects and has responsibility for licensing radon testers and mitigators.

As part of its educational component, the Division provides maps for the public to view to give an indication of what radon levels have been found or may be predicted in their counties.

In Indiana, much of the state is in Zone 1, with counties predicted to have indoor air concentrations of radon above 4 pCi/L, the recommended EPA action level. https://www.in.gov/isdh/images/Radon_Map.png

Utah Uses Map Webinar and Data Table to Inform Public about Radon

by Margaret Henderson

Utah Department of Environmental Quality, Radon Program, provides the public with information about potential and measured indoor radon concentrations in the areas where they live.

A short interactive map webinar, Utah Zone RAH, (Utah Geologic Survey Radon Zones) explains how to use the geologic information to determine the potential radon concentrations in a particular area. Using Google Earth, and putting an address into the application, the screen zooms in to the address, which is indicated as a particular radon zone by a color coded map. (Zones define areas that have predicted indoor radon concentrations based on geology.) https://www.screencast.com/t/EwZHtnNPE

Radon Sessions Included in International Symposium on Naturally Occurring Radioactive Material in Denver

The Ninth International Symposium on Naturally Occurring Radioactive Material (NORM IX) will be held in Denver, Colorado, September 22 – 27, 2019. On Wednesday, September 25, Radon/Thoron will be the topic of afternoon sessions. See the agenda at https://www.crcpd.org/mpage/NORMIX

CRCPD, in cooperation with the International Atomic Energy Agency, is organizing the Symposium, which will include presentations, posters, training and roundtable sessions from industry representatives, scientists, regulators and other stakeholders. Representatives from over 50 countries plan to attend.