Here in the Columbia Valley, we have a strong connection to the landscape, but did you know that relationship carries on when we’re indoors too?
A significant percentage of homes here in the valley are thought to have radon levels above Heath Canada’s guideline, yet few homes in our area have been tested. Unfortunately, most people do not find out that they’ve been exposed to high levels of radon gas until it is too late. Wildsight Invermere’s Radon Action and Awareness Program is working to change.
Radon is a radioactive gas produced by the natural decay of uranium in rocks and soil and is the second leading cause of lung cancer. This odorless, invisible gas enters our homes through tiny cracks in floors and walls where is accumulates. Recognizing the very low survival rate of just 17% for lung cancer[, and the subsequent large social impact on our community, Wildsight is offering FREE long-term, radon test kits to residents of the upper Columbia Valley who occupy their home year-round.
The goal of the program is to test radon levels in homes from Spillimacheen through to Canal Flats, map the results, and when levels exceed guidelines, direct homeowners to a certified radon mitigation professional. Results will be used to assess the percentage of homes with hazardous radon levels, and further increase awareness of the danger of radon.
How the Radon Action and Awareness Program Works
There is no cost to participate, but residents are asked to register, as there is a limited number of tests available per community. Registered participants will be notified of November dates and times when test kits can be picked up in Invermere. Testing will run through the winter. Once concluded, participants will return the radon detector to Invermere, and Wildsight Invermere will send them for processing. Participants will receive their results as well as information and options for radon mitigation, if desired. Lab analysis and data mapping are expected to be completed and presented no later than June 2018.
Register here for your FREE long-term radon test kit
Instructions for placing long-term radon detectors
Check out the BC Lung Association’s Radon Aware Program for more information.
Connect with Nate Sereda of Energy Advise, the Valley’s only certified radon mitigation specialist for help managing radon levels in your home.
The Radon Awareness in the Columbia Valley project is made possible with funding from the Columbia Basin Trust and RDEK.