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Presentations Available from the 2017 National Radon Training Conference and the International Radon Symposium

National Radon Training Conference and International Radon Symposium:

The joint meeting of the 27th National Radon Training Conference and the International Radon Symposium was held October 2-4, 2017 in New Orleans, Louisiana. The conference was hosted by the Conference of Radiation Control Program Directors (CRCPD) and the American Association of Radon Scientists & Technologists (AARST). Over 400 participants from the public and private sector, non-profits and universities attended four days of training, presentations and concurrent workshops.

Presentations made on day one at the joint opening sessions and the CRCPD meeting for days two and three are available in the resources section or by clicking here: Presentations—27th National Radon Training Conference.

EPA Grant Helps Protect Vermont Residents From Radon Exposure

BOSTON - The state of Vermont has received $105,000 that will support efforts to reduce exposure and health risks of radon found in buildings and schools.

The Vermont Department of Health received funds to provide long term test kits for homeowners, and to promote radon-resistant construction techniques in new buildings and renovations. The project will also offer technical assistance for assessing and reducing radon in schools.

The State of Vermont matches the federal award with 40 percent state funding to support actions in the state's approved work plan.

Continue reading here.

National Radon Action Plan Added to RadonLeaders.org

Radonleaders.org now has a section dedicated to the national radon action plan (NRAP). The NRAP is a strategy for saving lives coordinating the actions of three federal departments and nine national organizations.

It highlights progress in addition to describing strategies to reduce radon risk. Click NRAP for more information.

Radon Poster Contest Gets Underway

SALT LAKE CITY — Utah students are urged to help increase awareness of radon by participating in the 2017 National Radon Poster Contest.

Radon is a naturally occurring, invisible and odorless gas that can enter homes through cracks in the basement floor or from well water. According to the Utah Department of Environmental Quality, 1 in 3 Utah homes have elevated levels of radon, which has been linked to lung cancer.

The contest is being held in partnership with the DEQ, the Utah Department of Health, the Utah Cancer Action Network and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Children ages 9-18 are eligible to participate. Participants will compete in three categories: grades four through six; grades seven through nine; and grades 10 thought 12.

Read more here.

Notice of Intent To Establish Voluntary Criteria for Radon Credentialing Organizations

Notice of Intent To Establish Voluntary Criteria for Radon Credentialing Organizations
A notice of availability was published Wednesday, August, 23, 2017, in the Federal Register seeking public feedback on a proposed approach for developing voluntary criteria for organizations that credential radon service providers. The comment period for this action closes on November 23, 2017. Currently, states receiving indoor radon grants from EPA may only list providers credentialed by one or both of two recognized credentialing bodies or their state-run certification program. These criteria will establish an ongoing and open evaluation process for organizations wanting to credential radon service providers and will help states ensure high-quality radon services are available to their citizens. To access the notice, visit: https://www.regulations.gov/document?D=EPA_FRDOC_0001-21169

New Tech Protects Homes from Invisible Radon Threat

You don’t have to smoke to get lung cancer. If you’re unlucky and don’t take precautions, all you have to do is breathe the air in your home.

Radon — a colorless and odorless radioactive gas found in soil — causes more than 21,000 deaths from lung cancer every year in the U.S. — more than carbon monoxide and house fires combined. Released from rock, soil and water, the uranium-derived gas can reach dangerous levels in even the best-built homes.

Read more here.

Radon Could Be A Hidden Threat In Your Home

Realtor Debra Harris had found just what her client wanted.

A duplex on Morgan Street in Throop was remodeled, in move-in condition and at a price she could afford. It checked all her boxes for an investment property. But when the home inspection came back, there was an issue: radon.

A walk through the home wouldn’t show any sign of the odorless, colorless gas that comes from the decay of uranium.

The gas causes lung cancer and is the primary cause of the cancer among people who don’t smoke, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Luzerne and Lackawanna counties, and most counties in Pennsylvania, are in the EPA’s highest zone for highest potential for unhealthy radon levels.

“She was going to have tenants in there, so she definitely needed that addressed,” Harris said.

The seller wound up installing a radon mitigation system to close the deal. As Harris remembers, it cost about $2,500.

High Levels of Radon Found in Some Wells Across Pennsylvania

A new U.S. Geological Survey study has discovered high levels of radon in wells across certain areas of Pennsylvania.

The study, which was conducted in cooperation with the Pennsylvania Departments of Health and Environmental Protection, examined 1,041 well samples and found that 14 percent had radon levels at or above the Environmental Protection Agency’s proposed alternative maximum contaminant level of 4,000 picocuries per liter. While the EPA does not currently regulate radon in drinking water, it has proposed this alternative limit for public water supplies in states like Pennsylvania, which has an EPA-approved radon indoor air quality program. For states without an approved program, the EPA has proposed a lower, more protective, maximum contaminant level of 300 picocuries per liter.

Bethel Park students collaborate on radon-testing project

Testing for radon comes with the possibility of producing numbers you don’t exactly want to see.

“Luckily, none of our houses in Bethel were above the actionable levels that the EPA sets,” Neil Armstrong Middle School teacher Joe Rosi said, “which is awesome.”

As part of a project involving collaboration with Bethel Park High School students, Rosi’s fifth-graders conducted tests at their homes, determining if any exceed the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s threshold at which corrective action should be taken. For the record, and for aspiring scientists, that’s four picocuries per liter.

“We have kids who already have abatement systems that exist in their houses,” Rosi said. “They didn’t know what they had them for, and now they know.”

The silent killer: How to protect your home against radon gas

Unbeknownst to millions of families, the leading cause of lung cancer among non-smokers could be lurking inside their homes.

Exposure to radon, a naturally-occurring radioactive gas, claims an estimated 24,000 lives annually, according to the National Academy of Sciences (NAS).

Many victims have never smoked a cigarette, according to the American Lung Association.

Radon, a Class-A carcinogen, is the second-leading lung cancer threat overall, according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

The odorless, tasteless and colorless gas can be found anywhere and can go undetected inside homes for years.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) reports that one in 15 homes will test at or above the EPA’s action level of four picocuries per liter (pCi/L).

A picocurie is a measure of the rate of radon’s radioactive decay.