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Tuesday, November 21, 2017
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Canada Radon - Canadian Radon Experts
What is Radon?

Radon is a radioactive gas that is colorless, odorless and tasteless. It is formed by the breakdown of uranium, a natural radioactive material found in soil, rock and groundwater. Radon escapes from the ground into the outdoor air. It is diluted to low concentrations and is not a concern. However, radon that enters an enclosed space, such as a home, can sometimes accumulate to high levels. Radon breaks down to form additional radioactive particles called “progeny” that can contaminate the air you breathe.

Concern in Canada about indoor radon levels began in the mid-1970s. Some homes in communities where uranium ore was either mined or processed were found to have elevated radon concentrations. Recently Health Canada conducted a survey of the radon levels in 14,000 homes in 18 cities across Canada and has concluded that the Radon levels are significantly greater than previously thought. This new concern has prompted the Canadian Lung Association to urge Canadians to test their homes for Radon gas.

Health Risks

Radon gas in the air can be breathed into the lungs where it breaks down further and emits “alpha particles”. Alpha particles release small bursts of energy which are absorbed by nearby lung tissue. This results in lung cell death or damage.

When lung cells are damaged, they have the potential to result in cancer when they reproduce. Cancers caused by radioactivity are started by chance and not everyone exposed to radon will develop lung cancer. The time between exposure and the onset of the disease is usually many years.

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.

The World Health Organization indicates that radon exposure is a major and growing public health threat in homes and recommends that countries adopt reference levels of the gas of 100 Bq/m3

Dr Maria Neira, Director of WHO's Public Health and Environment Department say that "Most of radon-induced lung cancers occur from low and medium dose exposures in people's homes.

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