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North Carolina Radon Educational Program Accomplishments 2018

Contributed by Phillip Ray Gibson

2018 was a big year for radon education in North Carolina. Partnerships made all of these things happen and I am fortunate to have been involved in empowering our state with information on how to reduce lung cancer from radon exposure.

* In 2017 the NC Real Estate Commission made the level of 4 pCi/L of radon in air a material fact. This means that if the average level is 4 or more, then the licensed NC real estate brokers must share that fact with all parties. This began being implemented beginning in mid 2017.

* And while the NC Real Estate Commission began requiring their licensed brokers to attend training in July 2017, the education completion of this training did not happen until mid-2018. Thus, in 2018 approximately 100,000 NC real estate brokers completed their required training on the topics of the source of radon, how to test for radon and how to mitigate a home with elevated levels.

Minnesota USA Hockey Player Now President of CanSAR

Rachel Malmberg, a young, non-smoking, former USA Hockey player from Minnesota, was diagnosed with lung cancer and believes her disease is attributable to radon exposure. The Cancer Survivors Against Radon (CanSAR) nonprofit advocacy group has recently announced the selection of Rachael Malmberg as the organization’s President. In honor of National Radon Action Month (NRAM), Rachel is seeking to educate people about risks of radon exposure and is encouraging families to test the radon levels in their home.

CanSAR announced Ms. Malmberg as president in their copyrighted release stating:

Minnesota Radon Brochure Provides Comprehensive Information

by Margaret Henderson

Keeping Your Home Safe: Radon is a new 31-page brochure of the Minnesota Department of Health Indoor Air Unit. The brochure is designed to inform Minnesota residents about radon, testing and mitigation, and radon resistant new construction.

In Minnesota, radon can be a serious health concern. The geology of Minnesota, coupled with the fact that homes are closed during a great deal of the year, can create circumstances where radon levels create elevated risk.

The brochure presents information on where radon originates and how it occurs in Minnesota. It discusses health consequences and risks related to radon. The mechanics of how radon enters the home based on air pressure and foundation types, how testing and mitigation are accomplished, and the entire mitigation process are presented. Radon resistant new construction and radon in real estate are discussed also.

Connecticut Lists 2019 Local Health Program Partnerships

by Margaret Henderson

The Connecticut State Department of Health Radon Program’s mission is to promote radon awareness, testing, mitigation, and radon-resistant new construction throughout the state in order to reduce the number of radon-induced lung cancer deaths in Connecticut. The Radon Program provides a radon potential map, assigning counties of the state to zones that correspond with potential radon levels:

* Zone 1: Highest Potential (greater than 4 pCi/L)

* Zone 2: Moderate Potential (from 2 to 4 pCi/L)

* Zone 3: Low Potential (less than 2 pCi/L).

Approximately half of Connecticut is categorized as having high potential. The map was created using five sources of information:

1. Indoor radon measurements;

2. Geology;

3. Aerial radioactivity;

4. Soil permeability; and

5. Foundation type

The map is intended for informational use, but not to designate where testing should be performed as high radon levels have been in all zones.

Georgia Radon Data Shown in Maps

by Margaret Henderson

The Georgia radon program website has been updated to include an interactive map of radon testing done through the program from 2003-2017. The website notes: “The map below indicates areas at risk for higher levels of radon. Click the map to see your county. Please note that this data is based on test results between March 2003 and July 2017. There were insufficient data to determine the radon levels for counties without color. This map only serves as an approximation of the likelihood that your home contains higher radon levels.”

When clicking on a county, results are shown as, for example:

County: Crawford

Tests Completed: 6

Elevated results: 2

Percent Elevated:

Highest Result: 7.7 pCi/L

Vermont NRAM Outreach Includes Press Release and Video

by Margaret Henderson

The Vermont Department of Health Radon Program is planning a press release and a statewide Front Porch Forum post offering free long-term radon in air test kits and sharing one Vermonter’s experience with radon

One in seven Vermont homes has unsafe levels of radon. One way to reach neighbors to communicate about radon is by sharing information through the Forum. The Forum’s mission it to help neighbors connect. It is a free service in Vermont for community-building. See https://frontporchforum.com/

The Department’s website features the video “Kathy’s Story.” The video discusses the loss of Kathy’s mother to lung cancer related to radon. See http://www.healthvermont.gov/radon

The Radon Program also has several social media plugs planned and a local news station is planning a piece about radon in the home later this month.

For more information, contact:

Radon Program
108 Cherry Street
P.O. Box 70 – Drawer 30
Burlington, VT 05402-0070

Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services Promotes Radon Awareness

Contributed by Doug Gillespie

The Nebraska Radon Program has performed the following activities to promote radon awareness. We have provided 18 local health departments with mini grants to provide radon outreach. Each health department was able to be creative on their method of outreach. Some will provide free or low-cost test kits, some will conduct radio and newspaper advertising and have a poster contest in schools. One health department will have mitigation systems installed in daycare facilities that have tested high.

The Nebraska Radon Program has contracted to have radon awareness messages aired on radio stations throughout the state for the month of January to encourage radon testing. We also take advantage of this time to provide no cost testing in public school systems.

For more information, contact:

Doug Gillespie
Program Manager II
Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services
Office: 402-471-0548

Save The Date! Region 8 Radon Stakeholders’ Meeting April 18 & 19, 2019 Salt Lake City, Utah

Save The Date! Region 8 Radon Stakeholders’ Meeting

April 18 & 19, 2019 Salt Lake City, Utah

The Utah Department of Environmental Quality Radon Program is announcing the Regional 8 Radon Stakeholders’ Meeting to be held in Salt Lake City, Utah, April 18 and 19, 2019. Dr. Wallace Akerley will be the keynote speaker. This two-day meeting will consist of presentations by radon professionals, applicable organizations, contractors, realtors, builders, scientists, and vendors; also, an opportunity for continuing education credits will be provided. On Thursday, the 18th, an all-day conference will be presented. On the 19th, a training class will be provided. There will be a night-out on Thursday the 18th at "Punch Bowl Socials" at The Gateway Mall. Appetizers will be provided to attendees.

Connecticut Starts National Radon Action Month with Press Release and Several Activities

The Connecticut Department of Public Health Radon Program began National Radon Action Month (NRAM) with a press release. The Program distributed free test kits to local health department and districts for distribution in their communities. A half-day radon conference will be hosted by the Program on January 9th. The State Radon Poster Contest was judged and the Program awarded the top 4 winners out of 320 entries.

The press release opening NRAM follows:

PRESS RELEASE

Connecticut Department of Public Health

January 2, 2019

Contact: Maura Downes (860) 509-7270

DPH: CELEBRATE A HEALTHY NEW YEAR WITH A RADON TEST DURING NATIONAL RADON ACTION MONTH

Montana Promotes Radon Awareness during the Month of January 2019

The Montana Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) issued a press release announcing January as Radon Awareness Month in Montana. The Program will be releasing a radon public service announcement during the month as well. In its on-going outreach to residents, the Program continues to answer radon related questions and inquiries. The Program also offers a free subscription to its Mailing List for Radon Updates and News. See http://deq.mt.gov/Energy/radon for enrollment.

The DEQ Press Release follows: Driscoll, Paul / Wednesday, January 2, 2019

January is Radon Awareness Month

HELENA – Radon is a colorless, odorless, tasteless radioactive gas that comes from the natural breakdown of uranium, a natural element in rocks, soil and water. Radon can enter and accumulate in your home, posing a hazard to your health by damaging your lungs. Radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer behind smoking and secondhand smoke.