Colorado has become the latest State to make progress on generating awareness around the detrimental health issues caused by exposure to radon. A bill has been recommended by the Department of Regulatory Agencies (DORA) after a comprehensive review of instances of harm in the radon industry. The bill was approved 12-1 by the Colorado House Public & Behavioral Health and Human Services Committee, a body which considers matters concerning state health care programs and social service. The bill has now passed the Colorado House of Representatives and is pending a Senate hearing and approval. If approved, the bill is expected to become law in the Summer of 2022.
The initiative has been spearheaded by Terry Kerwin, Owner of Reliant Radon Solutions, and her team at the Rocky Mountain Chapter of the American Association of Radon Scientists and Technologists (AARST). Once passed the bill would require radon professionals to take training and continue their education so that best practice is adhered to. All practitioners would need to re-apply every few years. Currently, there are no ramifications for poor mitigation and radon measurements can be conducted by individuals who don’t follow protocol, do not have the required training, or don’t even understand the science. In essence, the bill protects citizens from charlatan consultants.
Colorado is one of many states that is looking to introduce radon legislation to formalize the radon mitigation process. Recently Kentucky, Indiana, and Minnesota have put into law bills which require radon consultants to follow good practice and industry standards to ultimately reduce public health risks. However, many States do not have formal regulations and procedures which means radon goes unnoticed and unmeasured, putting millions of citizens at risk of lung cancer. States without requirements for licenses or certification of radon tradespeople are: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Delaware, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Mississippi, Michigan, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Vermont, Washington, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.
Around the world, approximately 230,000 people die each year from lung cancer caused by radon. Particularly hard hit are areas with mountains and/or areas with cold climates. The latter is due to the fact that radon gas levels can usually be high in insulated houses that are heated. To understand your potential exposure to radon, you should always test.
Bill Rounds, President of Radonova, said: “The legislation moving forward in Colorado is good for the radon industry and the public at large. There are unfortunately too many States who are not replicating the efforts and progress which is being made in Colorado, which is disappointing. In fact, there a number of States with no radon programme or legislation. What is happening in Colorado should be used as a blueprint if we are ever going to effectively manage the dangers of radon exposure.”