CARST's Arthur G Scott Achievement Award
is an honour that is presented to individuals who have made significant contributions to the radon industry in Canada.
This award was named after Arthur Scott, who was a pioneer in developing the soil depressurization systems and laying the groundwork for much of the work we do today. In honour of his life's work, Arthur was the first recipient of the award.
Arthur G. Scott:
Radon had been suspected as a carcinogen for much of the 20th century, and early work on radon was focused on mining towns. In Canada this focus started in Elliot Lake, while at the same time the US were addressing similar issues in Grand Junction Colorado.
Arthur shared his reflections on the process of developing ideas for use in Elliot Lake, “It occurred to me that if the pressure differential between house and soil could be reversed, there would be no way for soil gas and radon to enter the house. The first thought was pressurization of the house, but the fan sizes needed were too high to be attractive as a long term solution[…] If the house could not be pressurized, the alternative was to decrease the pressure in the soil adjacent to the building, but could soil gas pressures be manipulated in this fashion?”
Arthur was ultimately convinced that soil gas pressures and movements could be manipulated and controlled and that soil depressurization systems should be tested. Elliot Lake homes were mitigated using a variety of soil depressurization systems including sub-slab suction and sump depressurization.
Although Arthur started his radon work in Canada, he shared his discoveries with the US, and much of this work was the foundation of the current EPA guidelines for radon mitigation. Arthur was key in developing The Health Canada Guide for Professional Contractors, and Health Canada’s Reducing Radon Levels in Existing Homes: A Canadian Guide for Professional Contractors was based on a document written by Arthur Scott. Arthur presented at conferences in Canada and around the world on topics including advanced diagnostic techniques for radon mitigation, health and safety, the history of radon mitigation and the history of radon. In addition to all of his technical contributions, Arthur was a man with a quick wit, a swift dance step and a great love for his wife Moyra.
Arthur G. Scott passed away with his family close by on Sunday, September 11, 2016 from a short, quick illness. We will miss your guidance and your wit, Arthur.
Dr. Jack R Cornett was born in Toronto in 1954. He received his PhD in 1982 from McGill University and then spent 17 years in AECL Chalk River Laboratory, conducting research in environmental radiological monitoring. In early 1999, he joined the Radiation Protection Bureau of Health Canada, serving as its Director and then in 2010 moved to Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, to lead DRDC Atlantic. In 2012, Dr. Cornett was appointed as Canada Research Chair for Radiochemistry and Environmental Health, serving as a full professor in University of Ottawa. Sadly, he left us last November following a serious bike accident.
During his 10 years in Health Canada, Jack initiated and led a number of high profile projects/programs, including the National Radon Program, which promotes radon testing and mitigation, at both workplace and homes, to reduce lung cancer risks from radon exposure. In presenting this award to Dr. Cornett’s family, CARST would like to thank Dr. Cornett for his great efforts and excellent leadership in developing the radon program in Canada. Cheers for Jack!
Over her many years of public service, Councillor Wilkinson was a shining example of how elected officials can contribute to building radon awareness. Not only did she hold regular radon awareness sessions for the citizens of Kanata North, Councillor Wilkinson also helped to educate the other Ottawa City Councillors about radon and urged them to raise radon awareness as well.
On October 31st, 2019 CARST participated in the Take Action on Radon launch event at Ottawa City Hall. Councillor Wilkinson was just weeks away from retirement, and it was a pleasure to mark her exemplary career by presenting her with the award and thanking her for her radon awareness work.
David Hanneson was a gentleman who was totally committed to educating people on the hazards of radon, and trying to ensure that everyone was living in a radon safe environment at home, at the workplace, and in the community. His interest in radon began in the late eighties while working for an environmental company in Ottawa. He soon realized that radon is a major health hazard and a lot more education and training was needed in this field. With this in mind he started his own company, Biomation, in 1990, the exclusive Canadian distributor for Rad Elec’s E-PERM System. He was kind, patient, knowledgeable and always eager to help anyone who had questions regarding radon or an interest in radon testing.
Dave’s many years of service and experience within the Canadian radon industry, and his technical education as a Physical Engineer with a MBA provided him with the background and knowledge to be an excellent instructor. The numerous students that he mentored over the years became radon professionals who formed the backbone of the Canadian radon testing program and advanced the understanding of radon throughout Canada.