Healthy places Air Quality Radon

Radon gas

What is radon gas?

Radon is a colourless, odourless, radioactive gas that can cause lung cancer. (Public Health Ontario)

Radon can be found in buildings (e.g. homes, schools, and offices) and is formed by the breakdown of uranium, a natural radioactive material found in soil, rock and groundwater. 

When radon is released from the ground into the outdoor air it gets diluted to low concentrations and is not a concern. Radon can sometimes accumulate to elevated levels in enclosed spaces like homes, which can present a health risk with long-term exposure.

Cross-Canada Survey of Radon Concentrations in Homes - Results
Here you will find a summary of the results from the Cross-Canada Survey of Radon Concentrations in Homes, a two-year study conducted by Health Canada's National Radon Program. The study estimated that 7% of homes sampled in Canada and 8.2% of homes sampled in Ontario had radon concentrations above the Health Canada guideline of 200 Bq/m3. In Oxford County, there were 104 homes tested and twelve homes (approximately 11.5%) were above the guideline.

What can you do about radon?

Where a home touches the ground, radon can get in anywhere it finds an opening including: cracks in the foundation, spaces around pipes, sump holes and floor drains, etc.

1. Testing. How to test your home for radon.
2. Reduce radon levels in your home
3. Quit smoking. People who smoke and are exposed to elevated levels of radon have a significantly increased risk of developing lung cancer.