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January 2024: Radon Action Month
January 01, 2024
WHEREAS, radon is a tasteless, odorless, colorless, radioactive gas that occurs as a result of the natural breakdown of uranium in soil and rock. It sometimes enters homes through openings in the foundation floor or walls; and,
WHEREAS, exposure to elevated levels of radon indoors is the leading environmental cause of lung cancer and is the second leading cause of lung cancer behind smoking in the United States; and,
WHEREAS, the United States Environmental Protection Agency recommends that homes with radon levels at or above 4 picocuries per liter (pCi/L) should be mitigated to reduce the lung cancer risk of occupants; and,
WHEREAS, approximately 26 percent of all valid radon tests conducted statewide returned results at or above 4 pCi/L; and,
WHEREAS, many homes across our state, including communities identified with environmental justice issues, have never been tested due to limited financial resources to perform a test or to take corrective actions to reduce exposure to radon; and,
WHEREAS, any home, regardless of age, structural type, or geographic location, 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 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, the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy, Michigan’s local health departments, and other statewide partners are working to inform all Michiganders about radon and actions that can be taken to reduce indoor radon exposure;
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Gretchen Whitmer, governor of Michigan, do hereby proclaim January 2024 as Radon Action Month in Michigan.