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Utah State of the Environment Report Addresses Radon

by Margaret Henderson

The Utah Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) released its annual State of the Environment Report in early 2019. The report is an end-of-year report for 2018. The activities of the department during 2018 are noted in a comprehensive report summarizes the ways the department addresses environmental issues in order to improve the health of residents of Utah. Included in the report is information about how radon issues are addressed.

One in three homes in Utah is anticipated to have elevated levels of radon in excess of the EPA recommended action level of 4pCi/L. The department’s Radon Program offers activities and services that promote awareness, testing and mitigation:

* Radon awareness through public outreach and education

* Low-cost test kits to Utah residents

* Indoor radon surveys in target areas

* Individualized assistance to homeowners and public agencies

* Public-school testing

Missouri Announces Poster Contest for 2019

The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services has announced its 2019 Radon Poster Contest, with entries being due October 30, 2019. The contest goal is to raise awareness and reduce radon exposure to the public. Entries may be made by children ages 9-14.

Awards are as follows:

“The state winners will receive gift cards in the amounts of $100 for first place and $50 for second and third place. Each winner’s teacher will also receive a $50 gift card. The top three state posters will be sent to the National Radon Program Services as entries to the national contest. The national winners will receive award plaques and gift cards in the amount of $1000 for first place, $600 for second, $400 for third, and $400 for special online voting recognition. National winners will be recognized in the state and EPA region where they live. Posters will be reproduced and distributed nationally to promote radon awareness.”

Minnesota Department of Health Announces New Interactive Radon Map

Adapted from the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) News Release, January 15, 2019

A new interactive map from MDH shows radon testing rates for every census tract in Minnesota counties and is available online at https://mndatamaps.web.health.state.mn.us/interactive/radontract.html

An estimated two in five homes in Minnesota have high levels of radon. The map presents radon test results from 2010-2016, as average annual testing rates per 10,000 housing units.

Nebraska Licensure and Public Information Focused on Reducing Radon Exposure

by Margaret Henderson

The Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services Radon Program focuses efforts on measurement and mitigation, providing information and listings of licensed services.

In Nebraska the potential for residents to be exposed to high radon levels is significant. One of every two radon test results in Nebraska shows elevated levels, above the 4 pCi/L recommended EPA action level. The map “Average Radon Concentrations by County in Nebraska” shows that the majority of Nebraska counties have high radon levels. http://dhhs.ne.gov/publichealth/Documents/RadonConcentrationsByCounty.pdf. Eight counties have test results averaging between 11-14 pCi/L. In seven counties, the highest radon levels were greater than 100 pCi/L.

Oregon Health Authority Updated Its Radon Risk Map

by Margaret Henderson

in January 2019

The Oregon Health Authority, Radon Awareness Program, has updated the Radon Risk Map as of January 2019. Maintaining data in tabular and map format, the Program presents radon risk levels in zip code areas. Risk levels assigned are Low, Moderate and High. These levels are assigned based on maximum test results, average test results and the percent of locations with values in excess of 4 pCi/L, the EPA recommended action level. The indoor radon test results were provided to the Program voluntarily by test kits manufacturers.

The risk categories are provided to give guidance to the public about potential risk, but are not intended to predict what radon levels may be present in any area of the state.

Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) Hosts Radon Measurement Training Throughout the State

From an announcement from MDH:

Tennessee Busy During NRAM Focusing Efforts on Health

Contributed by Jan Compton

Tennessee had had a busy month promoting NRAM 2019 during January. Jan Compton, Manager of the Radon Program, writes:

I manage the TN Radon Program and decided to take a new approach this year focusing more on health. I thought about where everyone spends their time in January and who is concerned about their health and decided to partner with gyms and fitness facilities across the state.

During the planning process, I mentioned it on my Region 4 EPA call with the other states and everyone was excited about the idea. I’m doing a smaller pilot project this year but next year we may take it across all region 4 states in a unified effort. The idea and new focus has caught the attention of many media outlets and I’ve been requested to give several interviews. Others have just written articles in various media outlets. Attached is my press release and below is the media coverage we have seen as of now. Thanks for sharing!

I had an interview with:

Washington DC Outreach during NRAM 2019

Contributed by Keith Keemer

The Department of Energy & Environment, Washington, DC, promoted January 2019 as National Radon Awareness Month with a poster and numerous outreach activities. The Radon Awareness Poster can be viewed at:

Throughout the month, activities included:

* Sending email blast to more than 79,000 residents including community organizations about NRAM/DC Radon Awareness Month, radon hazards and free test kits for DC residents.

* Publishing an article in the quarterly DC Healthy Homes Digest developed by the Agency’s Lead Safe & Healthy Housing Division.

* Posting social media Tweets about NRAM, radon hazard and free radon test kits 2 times a week.

Illinois and Subgrantees Have Several Activities Underway

Contributed by Pat Daniels

The Illinois Emergency Management Agency Radon Program and its subgrantees are undertaking several activities this year. For NRAM, the month was promoted with a Governor’s proclamation and press release on our poster and video contests.

Virginia Advertising Targets Areas Using Various Platforms

Contributed by Ryan Paris

From January through March 2019, the Virginia Department of Health Indoor Radon Program is running a coordinated advertising campaign that will primarily promote the availability of radon test kits for only a $3 shipping fee. Virginia residents may order these kits directly from the vendor using http://www.vdhradon.org. The offer is being simultaneously promoted in several targeted areas of the Commonwealth with advertisements that utilize the following platforms:

  • digital phone pop-ups;
  • 30 second TV spots (attached);
  • billboards (see attached);
  • VDH website banner; and
  • Facebook, Twitter and other social media.

Additionally, a video announcement may be viewed at https://vimeo.com/318427469