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North Dakota Provides Explanations about Radon in a Variety of Ways

by Margaret Henderson

In North Dakota, the entire state is classified as Zone 1, High Potential, where radon levels are predicted to exceed 4 pi/L, the USEPA recommended action level. https://www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/2014-08/documents/north_dakota.pdf The map is not intended to suggest whether or not a home any county should be tested for radon; testing is the only way to determine what level of radon levels exists.

With the potential for the levels of radon to be so high statewide, the North Dakota Department of Health Radon Program provides educational outreach to offer information and resources to the public, with special emphasis on students and teachers.

The Radon Program website displays a graphic that explains the decay chain for radon, which includes half-life and type of particle emitted (alpha or beta). The conditions under which radon may enter a home are described as:
• Presence of uranium in the soil as source material;
• Permeable soil;
• Pathways such as basements, holes, cracks, sumps, or plumbing openings, and;
• Air pressure differences with the existence of lower indoor air pressure.

Resources for students and teachers from a number of sources are given adding a variety of methods for learning and teaching. These include:

  • High School Radon Lesson Plans (pdf) from the New Jersey Department of Protection and Energy;
  • Learning About Radon - A Part of Nature (pdf), from the USEPA;
  • My Radon Workbook (pdf), from the Alabama Cooperative Extension System (Alabama A&M University and Auburn University)
  • Jason's Radon Adventure (pdf), from the North Dakota Department of Health’s Radon Awareness Program;
  • Radon Bingo (pdf);
  • Who Wants to Be a Millionaire Radon Game (pdf), from the Alabama Cooperative Extension System (Alabama A&M University and Auburn University); and
  • Building Radon Out Poster (pdf), from the USEPA.

For more information, contact:
Justin Otto - North Dakota Department of Health
Office telephone: 701.328.5188