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radon in Illinois

Downers Grove adopts rules to reduce radon

Downers Grove is updating its building code to include new state rules aimed at reducing radon in new construction.

The Village Council recently approved a mandate that all new residences in town must be built with "passive radon resistant construction," in line with a state law passed in June.

Community Development Director Tom Dabareiner said the law was enacted in response to the growing consensus that radon poses significant health risks. The council approved the measure at its April 1 meeting with all in attendance voting in favor. Commissioners Sean P. Durkin and Geoff Neustadt were absent.

"There's a large portion of the state where there is a significant amount of radon that's found in the soil and then a couple of areas where it's medium," Dabareiner said.

Knox County Looks for Solution to Radon Problem

News and Weather For The Quad Cities -

The Knox County Board met Wednesday evening to talk about the high radon levels at the county courthouse.

According to the EPA, any radon level of 4 pCi/L or greater is dangerous. So when employees at the Knox County Courthouse got a report stating some radon levels in the building were greater than 60, they were concerned.

The Knox County Board addressed those concerns at Wednesday's meeting and the board members said they're trying to come up with a plan to solve the problem.

New Radon Law Becomes Effective, Lombard Building Division to Require Permits

As part of a new State law that will take effect June 1, the Village of Lombard will require permits for installations of radon mitigation systems. Also as part of the new State law, all new construction will be required to install a passive (no power fan) radon mitigation system.

IEMA and American Lung Association Announce Student Winners in Video, Poster Contests

Contests promote awareness of radioactive gas linked to lung cancer

SPRINGFIELD--(ENEWSPF)--May 9, 2013. Students from across the state recently put their creative talents to work to help spread the message about the hazards of radioactive radon gas. More than 700 posters and 224 one-minute YouTube videos were submitted to the Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) and the American Lung Association in Illinois (ALA-IL) for consideration in the agencies’ annual contests.

“The students who created these posters and videos are incredibly creative,” said IEMA Director Jonathon Monken. “They took a very serious topic, the hazards of radon, and presented it in fun, innovative ways.”

Poster Contest
The top winners and their prizes include:

  • 1st place – Alanna Buttitta, Westfield Middle School, Bloomingdale, $200
  • 2nd place – Alice Tysse, Connor Shaw Center, Peotone, $150

Our Radon Risk

Sometimes it's not what we put into the environment that kills us--it's what's already there.

According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, radon is the second-leading cause of lung cancer, behind only smoking tobacco, killing 15,000 to 20,000 people annually. Sangamon County has some of the highest radon readings in Illinois: More than one in every four homes here has a radon level that exceeds what the EPA considers safe.

Radon is a natural, radioactive gas that escapes from the ground and enters the air. It comes from decaying radium, itself a byproduct of uranium found in the soil. Outside radon dissipates harmlessly into the air. But indoors radon can collect at dangerous levels, measured in picoCuries per liter (pCi/L). Radon becomes harmful when it is breathed over extended periods of time. The gas also can break down into particles, which can get lodged in the lungs. The effects of radon exposure were first studied on miners in the early 20th century.