The 25th International Radon Symposium, sponsored by the American Association of Radon Scientists and Technologists (AARST), will introduce pre-conference courses and an expanded practicum section at its Springfield, Illinois conference, September 22-25, 2013. The section will concentrate on the emerging risk reduction sectors of multifamily radon testing and mitigation, and radon new construction standards.
Radon,which is the second leading cause of lung cancer and can be deemed the seventh leading cause (after leukemia when separated from lung cancer) of all cancers, is a naturally occurring radioactive gas responsible for over 21,000 lung cancer deaths annually in the United States.
The Minnesota Departments of Public Safety and Health are teaming up to bring awareness to the dangers of radon. Radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer. Any home, regardless of its size or location, can pull up radon gases from the ground. Many people might be breathing in these deadly gases and never know. We hope this informational video will motivate you to get a radon test kit.
We talked to James Kelly, M.S., Supervisor for the Indoor Air Unit and asked a few questions about the video. In addition, we inquired as to other efforts that have taken place during the 2012 National Radon Action Month. First, we asked how the video came about and requested more information on how he was able to get the Commissioners of Public Safety on camera. His response was the following:
CRCPD has awarded six mini-grants for the 2011 Radon Mini Grant Program. Congratulations to the following state programs and their respective community partners:
- Illinois Emergency Management Agency and American Lung Association in Illinois
- Nebraska DHHS Radon Program and Elkhorn Logan Valley Public Health Department
- Ohio Department of Health, Indoor Radon Program and Erie County Health Department
- Maine DHHS Radiation Control Program and the Maine Indoor Air
- Quality Council
- Illinois Emergency Management Agency and the Southern Illinois Hospital Services
- Nebraska DHHS Radon Program and Panhandle Public Health District
You can’t see it, smell it or taste it, but radon gas could be in your home causing serious health problems for you and your family.
Believe it or not, the EPA has ranked indoor radon as among the most serious environmental health issues today. With stakes that high, it’s time to learn more. Erlend Bolle, CTO of Airthings, manufacturer of quality radon detectors, shares the following facts.
Read more here.
A University of Louisville School of Nursing researcher has found that the presence of children in the home did not motivate parents to test and mitigate for radon and secondhand tobacco smoke, both of which cause lung cancer. The findings highlight a need to raise awareness on these exposure risks and their long-term impact on children.
Read more here.
It’s been nearly five years since an earthquake hit Virginia, toppling chimneys and brick walls, cracking foundations and toppling furniture. No one was killed or seriously injured, and for many people, it’s just an exciting memory, but for some the quake may have produced a silent but dangerous problem for homeowners.
Wolfgang Hermann runs a company called Central Virginia Radon -- testing for and getting rid of a radioactive gas that comes from rocks and soil - leaking into houses and putting their residents at increased risk for lung cancer. Shortly after the Mineral earthquake, he made a surprising discovery.
“I went to a customer who had a radon monitor at home, a plug in device where they could detect, yes, after the earthquake it went up twice as much.”
And he heard of other cases where the same thing happened.
Read more here.
The Minnesota Department of Health is promoting a new interactive statewide map of radon levels to encourage residents to test for the carcinogenic gas.
The department said about two in five homes have dangerously high radon levels. Dan Tranter, supervisor of the Health Department's radon program, said he hopes the new map will spur people to test for the gas, which is the No. 2 cause of lung cancer.
All homes should be tested for radon even where the new map suggests the overall radon threat is relatively low, Tranter said.
"There are differences between counties when you look at the map you'll see southern Minnesota [and] western Minnesota tend to have higher radon levels, but we do see high radon levels across the state," said Tranter. "Every county, every ZIP code has high radon levels. So the way the public should use this is to stimulate their interest in the subject."
Real estate is all about location, location, location – and in more ways than one. As scientific research grows more sophisticated about naturally occurring toxins that are harmful to people’s health in large doses, what's in the soil beneath your home becomes an important part of that location concern as well.
Radon is one gas gaining significant attention in real estate transactions, as the National Radon Safety Board estimates nearly 1 in 15 homes in the U.S. have elevated radon levels – above the federally recommended 4 picocuries per liter of air, a unit of measurement for radioactivity.
The Environmental Protection Agency recommends all homeowners test their home’s radon level, as radon is now reported as the second leading cause of lung cancer in Americans, after smoking. As awareness of the dangers of radon exposure increases, the EPA also advises testing a home's radon levels before buying or selling it.
"Radon" sounds like a secret supervillain, and you could say that's essentially what it is. An invisible, odorless gas, radon concentrates in homes and buildings, exposing those who breathe it in to the second-top cause of lung cancer in the U.S. The good news is radon testing is simple; high-radon homes can be mitigated or fixed – and free or reduced-cost testing is offered in many areas.
Learn more about radon, mitigation, and testing for peace of mind.
January launched the annual Radon Poster and Video Contests for Illinois and Iowa. The Poster Contest calls on students ages 9-14 to create a radon poster that will increase public awareness of radon gas and encourages others to test their home. Students can win scholarships ranging from $50-$300. All posters and forms are due by March 1, 2016. For contest details and to view last year’s winners please visit http://healthhouse.org/radon/ia_poster.cfm for Iowa and http://healthhouse.org/radon/il_poster.cfm for Illinois.