Radon is a gas that is formed by the breakdown of uranium in the soil.
Uranium is a natural radioactive material found in rock and soil throughout Canada. The reason that Radon is of concern is that it is a cancer-causing natural gas that you can’t see, smell or taste.
Although Radon is found in outdoor air, it becomes more of an issue when it enters a home through the basement walls or floor. Radon typically moves up through the ground to the air above and into your home through cracks and other holes in the foundation. Your home can trap radon inside, where the concentrations can then build up.
Any home may have a radon problem.
This means new and old homes, well-sealed and drafty homes, and homes with or without basements. Concrete-block walls are particularly porous to radon.
Health Canada conducted a cross- Canada survey of 14,000 homes in 2009 and 2010. Results showed that:
- About 7% of homes in Canada have radon levels above the Canadian guideline.
- Radon levels vary quite significantly across the country.
- It is impossible to predict whether anyone house will have a high level of radon.
- Since Radon is the leading cause of lung cancer among non-smokers and is the second leading cause of lung cancer in the Canada and the U.S. Health Canada believes that Radon exposure is linked to roughly 16% of lung cancer deaths in Canada.