November Radon Action Month - Mike Holmes Jr., Home Renovation expert talks about testing for RADON . sponsored by:


      


    



Health Risks Associated With Radon Gas


  • RADON is the number one cause of lung cancer among non-smokers.

  • A smoker who is exposed to high levels of RADON gas has a significantly higher risk of getting lung cancer.


Health Canada estimates that in Canada, 16% of lung cancers are attributed to radon.  

RADON is estimated to be responsible for approximately 3,000 lung cancer deaths every year in Canada alone.


The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that radon causes up to 15% of lung cancers worldwide. 

An estimated 21,000 deaths in the US every year.


RADON levels can be tested in all buildings and can be reduced if high.  C-NRPP is a national certification program in Canada which trains professionals in Radon measurement and mitigation.


Mitigation is the term used to reduce radon levels in a building.


RADON is a radioactive gas and when you breathe it in, some of the particles stay in your lung tissue and begin to decay. As RADON and its decay products decay they release bursts of radiation that can damage the lung tissue cells. Over time the cell damage can lead to the development of cancer.


Research has been conducting in homeowner's through various North American, European and Asian studies to show the link between lung cancer and homeowner exposure.


Summary of Risks of Radon Exposure: 


Information from: Report of the Radon Working Group on a New Radon Guideline for Canada, REV. 03-10-2006, as submitted to the Federal Territorial Radiation Protection Committee


Lifetime risks to a smoker exposed to radon


Lung cancer risk for lifetime exposure to radon at 800 Bq/m3                

30 %

Lung cancer risk for lifetime exposure to radon at 200 Bq/m3

17 %

Lung cancer risk for no exposure to radon (i.e., at outdoor levels)

12 %


Lifetime risks to a non-smoker exposed to radon


Lung cancer risk for lifetime exposure to radon at 800 Bq/m3

5 %

Lung cancer risk for lifetime exposure to radon at 200 Bq/m3

2 %

Lung cancer risk for no exposure to radon


1 %

Lifetime risks for other types of exposures


Fatal cancer risk for 50-year exposure at occupational dose limit of 20 mSv/y

5 %

Fatal cancer risk for lifetime (80 year) exposure at public dose limit of 1 mSv/y

0.4 %

Lifetime risk of inhalation of asbestos at 0.1 fibre/ml (lowest level for observable health effects and the regulatory limit in France)

0.3%

Fatal cancer risk for lifetime consumption of water with arsenic at the MAC

0.09 %

Fatal cancer risk for lifetime consumption of water with radionuclides at MAC

0.04%

Fatal cancer risk for consumption of water with trihalomethanes at the MAC

0.0004%

Conventional “one-in-a million” definition of acceptable risk

0.0001%



Radon Testing:


Your risk of developing lung cancer from radon depends on the concentration of radon in the air you breathe, and the length of time you are exposed. Recent studies by the WHO have confirmed that the lung cancer risk extends to radon levels well below the current standards in North America and Europe. Health Canada recommends that all homeowners test their homes for radon gas in the interest of their family's safety.

 

For more information....


 

Health Canada's Website


Canadian National Radon Proficiency Program

 

Canadian Cancer Society


Canadian Partnership for Children's Health and Environment

 

World Health Organization (WHO) Website


Take Action on Radon


Lung Association




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