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radon remediation

Students recognized for local radon project

Superior’s Advanced Biology class recently competed at the 12th Annual Clean Air and Healthy Homes Program. On May 17, the students took their data regarding a remediation project they did at the school earlier this year.

The project stemmed from a class where students received radon detectors from Clean and Healthy Homes. They tested radon in the school and found high levels, especially in the basement. As a result, the students created a remediation project to help eliminate the noxious gas. Their efforts were successful and it lead to a presentation at the Annual Montana Science Fair held in March at the University of Montana.

At the Clean Air and Healthy Homes competition in Missoula, they presented their results to a cast of scientific judges. Superior students competed against 180 students from eight schools from around western Montana and Idaho.

High radon levels found at nine Fayette County schools

High radon levels were found at nine Fayette County Public Schools, requiring an emergency fix, a district official said Thursday.

The schools were: Bryan Station High, Booker T. Washington Intermediate, Harrison, Leestown Middle, LTMS, Mary Todd, Russell Cave, SCAPA and Sandersville. The remediation will cost $571,846.

Radon is a cancer-causing, radioactive gas, according to the EPA website. It comes from the natural decay of uranium that is found in nearly all soils. It moves up through the ground to the air and into buildings through cracks and other holes in the foundation.

The levels of radon are higher than the 4 picocuries per liter limit recommended by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The highest level found was Harrison Elementary at 15.8 picocuries per level.

Myron Thompson, acting senior director of operations and support, said work will begin during spring break and continue over the summer, all when students are not present.

Radon danger found in Montana homes

Montana is famous for its geology. Our vast valleys and towering mountains are some of the reasons we love living here. However, because of that geology, more than 50 percent of the buildings and homes tested in Missoula contain dangerous levels of radon.

The good news is that testing for radon is easy. Inexpensive test kits can be obtained at the Missoula City-County Health Department. The test kits are easy to use and include instructions and a prepaid envelope for mailing to a lab for analysis.

Read more here

Slovaks lack radon awareness

A NATURALLY-OCCURRING radioactive gas that leaks from the ground has become an invisible killer due to changes in home construction and lifestyles, and it disproportionately threatens children. Despite European Union rules that oblige member states to improve policies to deal with radon, the gas in question, there appears to be little interest in the issue in Slovakia.

“Officers should measure levels of radon but they do not,” Juraj Vaník from AG&E, a company which conducts radon measurement, told The Slovak Spectator. “The legislation addresses ionisation from subsoil. Sadly no officer from any village’s municipality connects it with radon; it is outside their technological knowledge.”