Radon is a radioactive gas that is produced naturally by the breakdown of uranium in the ground. Since radon can't be seen, smelled, or tasted, it can get into your home undetected. In outdoor air, radon is diluted and therefore not a concern. But in confined spaces like your house, radon can build up to high levels and become a health risk.
Radon can enter your home any place where the house touches the soil and there is an opening.
Possible entry points into your home include:
It is estimated that a non-smoker exposed to high levels of radon over a lifetime has a one in 20 chance of developing lung cancer. That estimate increases to one in three for a smoker exposed to high levels of radon over a lifetime.
Now is not the end. It is not even the beginning of the end. But it is, perhaps, the end of the beginning. - Winston Churchill.
These now famous words, spoken during WW2, can give us an idea of where we are with Radon testing and Mitigation in Canada and of Prince Edward Island.
Given what is now know about the significance of elevated radon levels in homes and the adverse health effects in can have, its difficult to believe that a quick search reveals that Health and Wellness PEI states : " The PEI Radon Project was the first initiative to collect province-wide baseline data for radon levels. The results do not indicate that radon is a significant problem on PEI. The results showed that only eight per cent of the samples exceeded the national guideline level and 80 per cent of those samples were only slightly over the new guideline level. None of the samples exceeded the old guideline level."
ONLY 8% ? That means 8% of Islanders are at risk, and our Provincial Department of Health and Wellness publishes it is not significant? And what do the old guidelines have to do with anything? Health Canada proposed new guidelines because they felt the old ones were unsafe.
Glen Gardiner is a Certified Radon Measurement Provider, and also a Certified Occupational Health and Safety Professional