WHY SHOULD I BE CONCERNED?
The conclusion that radon is a serious health risk is supported by the Surgeon General of the United States, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the American Lung Association, the National Academy of Science, and the National Council on Radiation Protection.
Not everyone exposed to radon develops lung cancer; but as the level of radon and length of exposure increase, so do the health risks.
Once created in the underlying soil, radon is easily drawn into a home through its foundation. Radon is a radioactive gas that decays into a series of solid particles known as radon decay products. These particles, formed from radon in the air, comprise a fine aerosol that can be inhaled into your lungs. The decay products are radioactive and can release alpha radiation while in your lungs, leading to an increased potential of lung cancer.
Carefully controlled studies in the United States, Sweden, and other countries have shown that prolonged exposure to elevated levels of radon decay products can significantly increase a person's chances of contracting lung cancer. Wherever radon gas is present, radon's decay products are also naturally present.
As directed by Congress, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued guidance for limiting non-occupational exposures to radon based upon current and past studies. This guidance was established after considering potential health risks and the cost of fixing buildings with elevated levels. Thus, the EPA-recommended "action level" of 4.0 picocuries per liter of air (4.0 pCi/L), annual average exposure is both a health-based and economic-based number.
The EPA-recommended action level is not a safety standard. Levels below 4.0 pCi/L still represent some risk. Even outdoor air contains some radon.
The United State Environmental Protection Agency and the Surgeon General recommend that people not have long-term exposure in excess of 4.0 pico Curies per liter of air (pCi/L)
Want to know more about Health Risks?
Continue with General Radon Information