January is 'Radon Action Month' in Illinois
SPRINGFIELD – Radon is a naturally-occurring element which is undetectable from human senses. The Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) is urging residents to take time in January to test their home for radon as part of 2023 Radon Action Month.
“This odorless, colorless, tasteless gas is found in the air we breathe in buildings, homes, offices,” said IEMA Director Alicia Tate-Nadeau. “If not properly addressed, high levels of radon can cause major health concerns.”
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It’s estimated more than 1,100 people in Illinois develop radon-related lung cancer each year. Radon tests can be purchased at most hardware and department stores. It is recommended to conduct one short-term test and one long-term test to ensure consistent readings. Should you find higher readings, you should contact IEMA for information about a licensed mitigation professional who are trained to reduce radon levels.
The IEMA and the Lung Association in Illinois are announcing the continuation of two statewide contests that encourage students to use their creative talents to promote radon awareness among young people. The Radon Video Contest asks Illinois high school students to create a 30-second commercial style video, while the Radon Poster Contest asks middle school students to create a poster that will encourage people to test their homes for radon.
“Radon is responsible for an estimated 21,000 lung cancer deaths every year and is the leading cause of lung cancer in people who have never smoked. Since radon is odorless, tasteless and colorless, the only way to detect radon in your home is to test the air. This is why it is critical for everyone to test their home,” said Angela Tin, National Senior Director of Clean Air Initiatives for the American Lung Association. “This contest is a perfect way for everyone to learn more about this dangerous gas and take action to protect yourself and your loved ones.”
Students Age 9-14
All High School Students
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$1000 (student), $300 (school)
$750 (student), $200 (school)
$500 (student), $100 (school)
All contest prizes are funded by a grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Both contests are sponsored by IEMA, Lung Association, and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region 5.
The top posters and videos from the 2022 state contests can be viewed on IEMA’s radon website at www.radon.illinois.gov. The website also includes information about radon and lists of licensed measurement and mitigation professionals. Information is also available through IEMA’s Radon Hotline at 800-325-1245.
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