[ RadSafe ] When Radiation Isn?t the Real Risk

Brennan, Mike (DOH) Mike.Brennan at DOH.WA.GOV
Mon Sep 28 12:06:30 CDT 2015

Parts of Tennessee also have karst topography, which can lead to high radon levels.  I realize that some people are dubious about radon at residential levels, but I suspect that annual averages in the 50+ pCi/l, with peaks in the multiple hundreds, would be of concern to everyone.

On a related note, last week I saw a presentation on some houses in PA, that had radon issues.  In one small neighborhood there were four houses with over 1,000 pCi/l, with the highest over 3,700 pCi/l.  I think we can all agree that is a problem.

-----Original Message-----
From: radsafe-bounces at health.phys.iit.edu [mailto:radsafe-bounces at health.phys.iit.edu] On Behalf Of S L Gawarecki
Sent: Thursday, September 24, 2015 7:03 AM
To: RadSafe
Subject: Re: [ RadSafe ] When Radiation Isn?t the Real Risk

Re Dan's comment on the general unhealthiness of living in the South--I'm well aware of that, as Tennessee has the same issues as Alabama. I just try to stay away from all that fried food and sugary snacks and lead a healthier personal lifestyle.

Cancer incidence and mortality rates are typically normalized with respect to age, so that comparisons can be better made between localities. However, I agree that Colorado is likelier to have a population more generally attuned to physical activity and healthier living than Alabama. But what this indicates to me is that low-level radiation exposure is not a significant factor in contributing to cancer risk--unlike what the fear-mongers would have us believe.

Similarly, several years ago there was a meta evaluation of cancer incidence among DOE workers at several facilities comparing badged workers with unbadged (administrative) workers. The badged workers had significantly lower cancer incidence. The epidemiologist explained this away by citing the "healthier worker" hypothesis (badged workers were more physically active than unbadged workers). Of course one could not cite hormesis! I'm sure if the results had gone the other way, radiation exposure would have been blamed.

*Susan Gawarecki*

ph: 865-494-0102
cell:  865-604-3724
SLGawarecki at gmail.com
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