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Residential Radon Exposure – A Leading Environmental Health Risk: Why we need to take action in Minnesota!<br />Don Mailey...
Radon<br />Radium<br />Uranium<br />What Is Radon?<br />Radon is a gas<br />It is naturally occurring<br />You can not see...
MN Radon Potential <br />Zone 1 <br /> Highest Potential (greater than 4 pCi/L)<br />Zone 2 <br /> Moderate Potential (fro...
Residential Radon Exposure – A Leading Environmental Health Risk: What is the Evidence?WHAT IS THE EVIDENCE   #1<br />Ther...
Average Contributions From Radon Sources In U.S. Homes<br />Emanation<br />2 - 5%<br />Water<br />< 1%<br />Soil Gas<br />...
These are averages - a particular home can be different!</li></li></ul><li>< 5  <br />5-6<br />10<br />Radon Gas Spatial D...
Occupational Exposure to Radon – Very Common<br />Mine workers, including uranium, hard rock, and vanadium <br />Workers r...
Subway tunnel workers <br />Construction excavators <br />Power plant workers, including geothermal power and coal <br />E...
Residential Radon Exposure – A Leading Environmental Health Risk: What is the Evidence?WHAT IS THE EVIDENCE   #2<br />Outd...
Outdoor 222Rn Concentrations<br />
Outdoor Radon Levels<br />
Residential Radon Exposure – A Leading Environmental Health Risk: What is the Evidence?WHAT IS THE EVIDENCE   #3<br />Alph...
Radon Decay Products<br />Radon<br />Radon<br />Why Is Radon A Concern?<br />Radon decays into radioactive particles known...
What Happens When Radon-222 Enters a House?<br />Radon<br />Radon<br />Radon enters home.<br />Radon radioactively decays ...
What Happens When Radon Decay Products Are Inhaled?<br /><ul><li>Highly radioactive particles adhere to lung tissue, where...
Radiation can alter the cells, increasing the potential for cancer.</li></ul>Double Strand Breaks<br />
Residential Radon Exposure – A Leading Environmental Health Risk: What is the Evidence?WHAT IS THE EVIDENCE   #4<br />For ...
Annual Effective Dose Equivalent to Member of the U.S. Population NCRP 93 (1987)<br />Natural(mrem)<br />Radon		200<br />C...
Residential Radon Exposure – A Leading Environmental Health Risk: What is the Evidence?WHAT IS THE EVIDENCE   #5<br />Wate...
Waterborne Radon<br />Primarily from groundwater sources (wells) rather than rivers<br />
Residential Radon Exposure – A Leading Environmental Health Risk: What is the Evidence?WHAT IS THE EVIDENCE   #6<br />Nati...
“Radon Is A Serious National Health Problem”<br />American Lung Association<br />American Medical Association<br />Environ...
EPA & Surgeon General Recommend<br />Take action if a home is at or above 4.0 pCi/L<br />(year long average)<br />4.0 pCi/...
How Does Radon Rank As A Cancer Causing Agent?<br />Radon is ranked as a Group A carcinogen <br />Highest ranking for canc...
Residential Radon Exposure – A Leading Environmental Health Risk: What is the Evidence?WHAT IS THE EVIDENCE   #7<br />Labo...
Residential Radon Exposure – A Leading Environmental Health Risk: What is the Evidence?WHAT IS THE EVIDENCE   #8<br />Stud...
Original Scientific Basis For Radon Risk Estimates<br />Studies on miners.<br />Uranium miners in U.S. and other countries...
EPIDEMIOLOGIC MINER STUDIES<br />China (Tin Miners)<br />Czechoslovakia (Uranium)<br />Colorado (Uranium)<br />Ontario (Ur...
Residential Radon Exposure – A Leading Environmental Health Risk: What is the Evidence?WHAT IS THE EVIDENCE   #9<br />Case...
Residential Radon Exposure – A Leading Environmental Health Risk: What is the Evidence?WHAT IS THE EVIDENCE   #10<br />Rad...
LUNG  CANCER  DEATHS Per Year<br />Estimated 172,000 Lung Cancer Deaths in 2008*<br />Attributed to Radon<br />Approximate...
  Should we be concerned about radon-induced lung cancer given that the risk pales in comparison to the risk posed by smok...
Comparing Radon Related Cancer to Other Cancer Types<br />Lung Cancer (radon)<br />20000<br />Liver Cancer<br />18000<br /...
Comparing Radon Related Cancer to Other Cancer Types<br />
Radon Decay Products<br />Radon<br />Radon<br />Is Radon a Leading Environmental Health Risk ? <br />
Why are the hazards of radon ignored or not accepted ??<br />Invisible, odorless, colorless<br /> Naturally occurring (no ...
Further Information on Radon<br />EPA   1-800-SOS-RADON<br />http://www.epa.gov/radon/<br />Bill Field  319-335-4413<br />...
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  1. 1. Residential Radon Exposure – A Leading Environmental Health Risk: Why we need to take action in Minnesota!<br />Don Mailey<br />RE/MAXResultsc (952) 212-0968e-mail<br />Don@DonMailey.com<br />
  2. 2. Radon<br />Radium<br />Uranium<br />What Is Radon?<br />Radon is a gas<br />It is naturally occurring<br />You can not see or smell it<br />It enters buildings from the soil beneath them<br />
  3. 3. MN Radon Potential <br />Zone 1 <br /> Highest Potential (greater than 4 pCi/L)<br />Zone 2 <br /> Moderate Potential (from 2 to 4 pCi/L) <br />
  4. 4. Residential Radon Exposure – A Leading Environmental Health Risk: What is the Evidence?WHAT IS THE EVIDENCE #1<br />There is widespread potential for radon exposure in homes and schools in MN, as well as workplaces!<br />
  5. 5. Average Contributions From Radon Sources In U.S. Homes<br />Emanation<br />2 - 5%<br />Water<br />< 1%<br />Soil Gas<br />85 - 90%<br />Diffusion<br />1 - 4%<br />Soil Containing Radium<br />Radium Containing Soil<br /><ul><li>The movement of soil gas into a home is the predominant entry route.
  6. 6. These are averages - a particular home can be different!</li></li></ul><li>< 5 <br />5-6<br />10<br />Radon Gas Spatial Distribution<br />Radon enters from beneath foundation and travels upward. <br />Diluted with outdoor air infiltrating building<br />If radon is less than 4 pCi/L in lower level, one can say with reasonable confidence that upper floors are also less than 4 pCi/L. <br />
  7. 7. Occupational Exposure to Radon – Very Common<br />Mine workers, including uranium, hard rock, and vanadium <br />Workers remediating radioactive contaminated sites, including uranium mill sites and mill tailings <br />Workers at underground nuclear waste repositories <br />Radon mitigation contractors and testers <br />Employees of natural caves <br />Phosphate fertilizer plant workers <br />Oil refinery workers <br />Utility tunnel workers <br />
  8. 8. Subway tunnel workers <br />Construction excavators <br />Power plant workers, including geothermal power and coal <br />Employees of radon health mines <br />Employees of radon balneotherapy spas (waterborne 222Rn source) <br />Water plant operators (waterborne 222Rn source) <br />Fish hatchery attendants (waterborne 222Rn source) <br />Employees who come in contact with technologically enhanced sources of naturally occurring radioactive materials <br />Incidental exposure in almost any occupation from local geologic 222Rn sources <br />Plowing?<br />
  9. 9. Residential Radon Exposure – A Leading Environmental Health Risk: What is the Evidence?WHAT IS THE EVIDENCE #2<br />Outdoor radon exposure can be significant!<br />
  10. 10. Outdoor 222Rn Concentrations<br />
  11. 11. Outdoor Radon Levels<br />
  12. 12. Residential Radon Exposure – A Leading Environmental Health Risk: What is the Evidence?WHAT IS THE EVIDENCE #3<br />Alpha particles are very <br />effective at causing DNA <br />damage!<br />
  13. 13. Radon Decay Products<br />Radon<br />Radon<br />Why Is Radon A Concern?<br />Radon decays into radioactive particles known as radon decay products.<br />These particles are easily inhaled and deposited in the lungs where they can damage sensitive lung tissue.<br />
  14. 14. What Happens When Radon-222 Enters a House?<br />Radon<br />Radon<br />Radon enters home.<br />Radon radioactively decays into RDPs in the air.<br />Some RDPs remain in the air.<br />Some RDPs plate out on surfaces.<br />RDPs<br />RDPs<br />
  15. 15. What Happens When Radon Decay Products Are Inhaled?<br /><ul><li>Highly radioactive particles adhere to lung tissue, where they can irradiate sensitive cells.
  16. 16. Radiation can alter the cells, increasing the potential for cancer.</li></ul>Double Strand Breaks<br />
  17. 17.
  18. 18. Residential Radon Exposure – A Leading Environmental Health Risk: What is the Evidence?WHAT IS THE EVIDENCE #4<br />For the average individual in the United States – Radon decay products (radon) deliver over 50% of our average radiation dose! For the average Minnesotan, it represents well over 65%!!<br />
  19. 19. Annual Effective Dose Equivalent to Member of the U.S. Population NCRP 93 (1987)<br />Natural(mrem)<br />Radon 200<br />Cosmic 27<br />Terrestrial:<br />-external 28<br />-internal 39<br />Artificial (mrem)<br />-Diag. X-rays 39<br />-Nuc. Med. 14<br />-Consumer Pro. 10<br />-Other ~1<br />TOTAL ~360<br />
  20. 20. Residential Radon Exposure – A Leading Environmental Health Risk: What is the Evidence?WHAT IS THE EVIDENCE #5<br />Waterborne radon also contributes to our overall radon exposure!<br />
  21. 21. Waterborne Radon<br />Primarily from groundwater sources (wells) rather than rivers<br />
  22. 22. Residential Radon Exposure – A Leading Environmental Health Risk: What is the Evidence?WHAT IS THE EVIDENCE #6<br />National and International Public Health Agencies support the contention that radon is a leading environmental <br />health risk! <br />
  23. 23. “Radon Is A Serious National Health Problem”<br />American Lung Association<br />American Medical Association<br />Environmental Protection Agency<br />National Academy of Sciences<br />National Council on Radiation Protection and Measurement<br />U.S. Surgeon General<br />World Health Organization, and others…..<br />
  24. 24. EPA & Surgeon General Recommend<br />Take action if a home is at or above 4.0 pCi/L<br />(year long average)<br />4.0 pCi/L EPA ACTION LEVEL<br />Average indoor: 1.3 – 1.4 pCi/L<br />Average outdoor: 0.4 pCi/L<br />
  25. 25. How Does Radon Rank As A Cancer Causing Agent?<br />Radon is ranked as a Group A carcinogen <br />Highest ranking for cancer potential<br />Known to cause cancer in humans<br />Tobacco smoke and tobacco products in same category<br />International Agency for Research on Cancer <br />
  26. 26. Residential Radon Exposure – A Leading Environmental Health Risk: What is the Evidence?WHAT IS THE EVIDENCE #7<br />Laboratory studies using different species of radon-exposed animals clearly show a linear dose- response relationship between radon and lung cancer.<br />
  27. 27. Residential Radon Exposure – A Leading Environmental Health Risk: What is the Evidence?WHAT IS THE EVIDENCE #8<br />Studies of occupationally-exposed miners clearly show a linear relationship between radon exposure and lung cancer!<br />
  28. 28. Original Scientific Basis For Radon Risk Estimates<br />Studies on miners.<br />Uranium miners in U.S. and other countries<br />
  29. 29. EPIDEMIOLOGIC MINER STUDIES<br />China (Tin Miners)<br />Czechoslovakia (Uranium)<br />Colorado (Uranium)<br />Ontario (Uranium)<br />Newfoundland (Florspar)<br />Sweden (Iron)<br />New Mexico (Uranium)<br />Beaverlodge (Uranium)<br />Port Radium (Uranium)<br />Radium Hill (Uranium)<br />France (Uranium)<br />
  30. 30. Residential Radon Exposure – A Leading Environmental Health Risk: What is the Evidence?WHAT IS THE EVIDENCE #9<br />Case-control studies of individuals exposed to radon in their homes show an increased lung cancer risk even at or below the EPA’s action level of 4 pCi/L (150 Bq/m3).<br />
  31. 31. Residential Radon Exposure – A Leading Environmental Health Risk: What is the Evidence?WHAT IS THE EVIDENCE #10<br />Radon exposure represents a major source of cancer mortality in the United States!<br />
  32. 32.
  33. 33. LUNG CANCER DEATHS Per Year<br />Estimated 172,000 Lung Cancer Deaths in 2008*<br />Attributed to Radon<br />Approximately 21,000 EPA 2008<br />*CA: A Journal for Clinicians - 2008<br />
  34. 34. Should we be concerned about radon-induced lung cancer given that the risk pales in comparison to the risk posed by smoking?<br />
  35. 35. Comparing Radon Related Cancer to Other Cancer Types<br />Lung Cancer (radon)<br />20000<br />Liver Cancer<br />18000<br />16000<br />Brain Cancer<br />14000<br />Stomach Cancer<br />12000<br />Annual U.S. Cancer Deaths<br />10000<br />Melanoma<br />8000<br />Oral Cancer<br />6000<br />4000<br />Gallbladder Cancer<br />2000<br />Bone Cancer<br />0<br />
  36. 36. Comparing Radon Related Cancer to Other Cancer Types<br />
  37. 37.
  38. 38. Radon Decay Products<br />Radon<br />Radon<br />Is Radon a Leading Environmental Health Risk ? <br />
  39. 39. Why are the hazards of radon ignored or not accepted ??<br />Invisible, odorless, colorless<br /> Naturally occurring (no villains)<br /> Can not link deaths to radon exposure<br /> Long latency period<br /> Not a dread hazard<br /> Cancers occur one at a time<br /> Voluntary risk<br /> Lack of press – no sensational story<br /> No sensory reminders to repetitively stimulate <br /> us to think about it<br /> Lung cancer does not occur in children<br />
  40. 40. Further Information on Radon<br />EPA 1-800-SOS-RADON<br />http://www.epa.gov/radon/<br />Bill Field 319-335-4413<br />bill-field@uiowa.edu<br />
  41. 41. Special Thanks To:<br />R. William Field, Ph.D., M.S.<br />Associate Professor<br />Department of Occupational and Environmental Health<br />Department of Epidemiology<br />College of Public Health<br />104 IREH<br />University of Iowa<br />Iowa City, IA 52242<br />Bill-field@uiowa.edu<br />
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