Here is what we know about radioactive radon gas and what we can do about it.
What We Know
Radon is a radioactive gas that occurs naturally in nearly all soil. It enters homes and other buildings through small cracks and holes in the foundation. When it is indoors, radon gas becomes trapped and accumulates in the air. When people breathe in radon, it damages the lungs, which may result in lung cancer. According the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), radon is the leading cause of lung cancer among non-smokers and the second leading cause of lung cancer among smokers…….
What States Can Do
States play a vital role in protecting the public from harmful environmental exposures, including household radon. The following state practices show promise in reducing household exposures to radon, and ultimately lung cancer deaths. Monitoring the effect of state-based radon policies is vital to establishing best practices and helping states develop policies if they do not already have radon-specific laws……..
Case Study: Reducing Radon in Illinois
More than 40% of the homes tested in Illinois between 2003 and 2011 were above the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) action level of 4 picocuries per liter of air; 70% of counties in the state had average radon levels above this level. To address the radon problem, Illinois passed state laws to reduce household radon exposure. Illinois law requires…..
What Comprehensive Cancer Control Programs Can Do About Radon
CDC’s National Comprehensive Cancer Control Program recognizes the importance of policies and activities that reduce exposure to cancer-causing agents to prevent people from getting cancer. A state’s comprehensive cancer control plan can align the priorities, goals, and activities of cancer coalitions with practices that reduce radon exposure and the risk of radon-induced lung cancer. Twenty-seven state cancer control plans include activities to reduce radon exposure……