January 2020: Radon Action Month

WHEREAS, radon is a tasteless, odorless, colorless, radioactive gas that occurs as a result of the natural breakdown of uranium in soil and rock, and sometimes enters homes through openings in the foundation floor or walls; and,


WHEREAS, exposure to elevated levels of radon is an environmental health threat, and exposure in homes is a leading environmental cause of cancer mortality in the United States; and,


WHEREAS, the United States Environmental Protection Agency recommends that homes with radon levels at or above 4.0 picocuries per liter (pCi/L) should be mitigated to reduce the lung cancer risk of occupants; and,


WHEREAS, elevated radon levels can be found in every Michigan county, and, in some Michigan counties, more than 50 percent of the homes tested had elevated radon levels; and,


WHEREAS, 26 percent of all valid radon tests conducted statewide returned results at or above 4.0 pCi/L; and,


WHEREAS, any home, regardless of age or structural type, may have elevated levels of radon, even if nearby homes do not; and,


WHEREAS, testing for radon is easy and inexpensive, and the risk of developing lung cancer can be significantly decreased by reducing the elevated radon levels found indoors; and,


WHEREAS, radon-resistant techniques can be used during the construction of new residential structures to reduce the lung cancer risk associated with radon; and,


WHEREAS, during this month, we join with the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy, local health departments, and other statewide partners to encourage citizens throughout the state to test their homes, to have elevated levels of radon reduced, and to incorporate radon-resistant features into new home construction;


NOW, THEREFORE, I, Gretchen Whitmer, governor of Michigan, do hereby proclaim January 2020 as Radon Action Month in Michigan.