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Call To Action

Call To Action
To Reduce Lung Cancer from Radon
in American Homes

Reduce Radon Statement

Stakeholders in healthy affordable housing have a prime opportunity to ensure our homes do not expose occupants to radon, a widespread and deadly carcinogen. Managing radon risk is a key component of ensuring a healthy home.

Radon causes over 21,000 lung cancer deaths each year and is the second leading cause of lung cancer in the United States.

The first-ever U.S. Federal Action Plan, Protecting People and Families from Radon, released by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in June 2011, aims to reduce loss of life due to elevated radon in houses, apartments, child care facilities, schools, and offices by mitigating 10 million U.S. homes with elevated radon. The plan represents the commitment of 9 federal agencies to do work already within their authority that can have a measurable impact on health. When implemented, the plan will save 6,500 lives from radon-related lung cancer each year. Fulfilling the plan will require actions by Federal agencies, allied public and private sector organizations, community-based non-profit organizations and the U.S. housing sector.

The new federal plan outlines new, bolder action including radon testing and mitigation of publicly assisted housing, loans and grants to fund radon mitigation in homes of low-income families, and efforts to facilitate the deductibility of radon testing and mitigation costs. It promises the means to save lives from a deadly carcinogen. The plan’s objectives will not be accomplished without key public and private leadership.

The members of this coalition are committed to reducing radon exposure to prevent lung cancer and save lives, by stimulating synergies among advocates, public sector programs, property owners, industry, and others to apply well-documented cost-effective interventions to the nation’s highest risk real estate assets. We support the following six strategies:

  • The Federal Action Plan - as the basic foundation for nation-wide progress;
  • Adoption of radon resistant construction requirements for Zones 1 and 2 in all building-related codes and standards(models, national policy, state laws, and local ordinances);
  • Policies and programs that provide for testing and mitigation of existing single and multi-family housing in conjunction with real estate transactions, retrofits, renovations, and refinancing;
  • Financing resources for mitigation of urban, suburban and rural housing;
  • Radon education to promote primary prevention of radon exposure; and
  • Ensure appropriate funding and legislation for radon risk reduction policies, standards and programs.

Meeting and Resources Materials

December 9, 2011: National Center for Healthy Housing - Washington, D.C.

Organizing Committee

Janice Nolen, American Lung Association (ALA)
Calvin Murphy, American Association of Radon Scientists & Technologists (AARST)
Ruth McBurney, Conference of Radiation Program Control Directors (CRCPD)
Gloria Linnertz, Cancer Survivors Against Radon (CANSAR)
Jane Malone, National Center for Healthy Housing (NCHH)
Larry Marcum, National Environmental Health Association (NEHA)