NEWS

EUROPEAN RADON ASSOCIATION ANNUAL AWARD 2017

Dr Zora S. Žunić ,Vinča Institute of Nuclear Sciences,Belgrade has been presented with the 2017 European Radon Association Award for her outstanding and pioneering contributions , often in very difficult situations,  in investigating the exposure of the population of Serbia to the natural radioactive gas Radon-222.

New ERA officers

The process of internal elections to choose the new ERA officers has finished. The new ERA officers that will come into office as of 1st January 2018 are:

  • ERA President: Wolfgang Ringer (AGES, Austria)
  • ERA Vice-President: Per Nilsson (Independia International, Sweden)
  • ERA Treasurer: Boris Dehandschutter (FANC, Belgium)
  • ERA Secretary: José – Luis Gutiérrez Villanueva (Radonova AB, Sweden)

Air Quality Assessment: the LIFE-RESPIRE project

On 21 September 2017, the European LIFE-RESPIRE (acronym for Radon rEal time monitoring system and Proactive Indoor Remediation) project was launched in a public meeting organized at Sapienza University in Rome (Italy). The partnership of the project includes: the Research Center of Prediction, Prevention and Control of Geological Risks (CERI) of the Rome University “Sapienza” (project leader), the Institute of Environmental Geology and Geoengineering of the National Research Council of Italy (CNR-IGAG), the National Institute of Geophysics and Volcanology (INGV) (Rome, Italy), the Federal Agency for Nuclear Control (FANC) (Brussels, Belgium), the industrial partner Elica S.p.A. (Fabriano, Italy) and CiaoTech s.r.l. (Rome, Italy).

Rn has been classified as a carcinogen since 1988 and declared by the United Nations Commission on the Effects of Atomic Radiation (UNSCEAR) as the most important source of ionizing radiation in indoor environments. The project concerns the monitoring and the assessment of radon risk in confined environments (e.g. workplaces and private buildings), where people lives 80-90% of their time, in order to reduce the exposure of the population to natural radiation.

The main goals of ‘Life-Respire’ are:

– the application in four areas – three in Italy and one in Belgium – characterized by different Geogenic Radon Potential, of an economical and environmentally friendly instrumentation for the real-time measurement and remediation of radon levels in selected buildings below the reference action level of 300 Bq/m3 and up to 100 Bq/m3 (as indicated in the European Directive 2013/59 / EURATOM). The project provides a remediation system of indoor air quality, intelligent hybrid, adaptive and versatile, consisting of sensors, an intelligent air intake and monitoring system (SNAP) and an additional external ventilation system (eolic and / or electric) based on the positive pressure method. A control model based on a IoT protocol will also be developed;

– the construction of a geodatabase that will allow to store in real time data from the continuous radon measurements (SNAP system), together with other geological, geochemical data, as well as with the constructive features of the monitored buildings. The database will be managed and disseminated through a dedicated WebGIS platform. All stored data could be integrated, after calibration and verification by the responsible authorities, within the European Atlas of Natural Radiation (promoted by the European Community’s Joint Research Center);

– the definition of radon risk guidelines and radon concentration maps (indoor and outdoor) that can be used from local authorities to identify the Radon Prone Areas for health risk assessment and management, and for land-use planning within national action plans (see Articles 54, 74 and 103 of 2013/59 / EURATOM).

The open meeting was attended by the representatives of the various research partner organizations and by the Mayors of the Lazio municipalities directly involved in the project: Caprarola (Viterbo), Celleno (Viterbo) and Ciampino (Rome).

“The project will provide a significant contribution to the protection of human health from exposure to natural radioactivity,” said Giancarlo Ciotoli, researcher of CNR-IGAG. “In addition, the collected data will be available to all stakeholders through a dedicated WebGIS platform that will allow data interrogation and web mapping applications. The WebGIS will constitute a useful tool for public authorities and authorities to find innovative solutions for land-use planning and epidemiological research on radon exposure”.

Contact information:

Sabina Bigi (Project Leader, CERI, Sapienza) sabina.bigi@uniroma1.it
Giancarlo Ciotoli (CNR-IGAG) giancarlo.ciotoli@igag.cnr.it
Alessandra Sciarra (INGV) alessandra.sciarra@ingv.it
Boris Dehanschutter (FANC) boris.dehandschutter@fanc.fgov.be
Mauro Castello (ELICA, S.p.A.) m.castello@elica.com

Realization and transmission of the quantity radon activity concentration at the calibration laboratory of the Federal Office for Radiation Protection (BfS), Germany

Thomas Beck

Due to the change in the policy of PTB regarding the traceability of radon quantities, it was necessary for BfS to set up a facility for the realization and transmission of the measurement quantity radon activity concentration. The basic component of the facility is a radon-tight chamber with a certified volume traced back to a standard volume at PTB. The facility is equipped with instruments for monitoring temperature and air pressure. This basic setup is extended by an additional volume as well as by devices for monitoring online the actual radon activity concentration and for extraction of a defined quantity of radon-loaded air.

The facility can be used flexibly to fulfill different measurement tasks, and to improve the traceability of the measurement quantity. First results show that the measurement uncertainties achieved correspond excellently to the uncertainties of the former calibrations carried out by PTB. In extension to PTB which provided calibrations only in the range above 1000 Bq/m³, the facility of BfS can calibrate instruments even down to 100 Bq/m³.

The purpose of the facility established at BfS is not only to ensure and improve the traceability for the BfS radon calibration laboratory itself, but also to transmit the quantity radon activity concentration to external interests. With this facility, BfS contributes towards international harmonization and comparability of radon measurements.

RESULTS OF THE RECENT ELECTION FOR  THE INCOMING  EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE FOR THE PERIOD 2018-2019

The EC election and its outcome was approved by the General Assembly (GA) which   took place in Hotel Park Moskva, Sofia on Wednesday May 17th 2017 following the ERA Workshop. The maximum number of valid votes that could have been cast was 110. The actual number of votes cast was 94. All these votes were valid.  Three votes were cast in person at the GA while 91 had been cast electronically prior to the GA. The ERA Membership had been informed of the online voting procedures by e-mail on 21 April by the Secretary.  All voting, both online and in person, was done confidentially.  Just prior to the GA the votes cast were verified and counted by the ERA President, Secretary and Treasurer.

The following is a list of the candidates (in alphabetical order) together with the votes each candidate received. There were 17 candidates for 15 positions. In keeping therefore with the ERA Statutes the candidates which received the 15 highest number of votes were presented to the GA which gave its approval to their election.   The incoming EC, which takes office on 1 January 2018, will in due course elect from within its ranks its four officers (President, Vice –President, Secretary and Treasurer). The successful candidates for these positions will also be announced on the ERA Website.

NAMES OF CANDIDATES                                          NUMBER OF VOTES RECEIVED    
Rebecca Coates 48
Bernard Collignan 77
Boris Dehandschutter 88
Martin Freeman 58
Jose Luis Gutierrez-Villanueva 88
Maria Hansen 68
Erik Hulber 44
Stephanie Hurst 80
Geraldine Ielsch 56
Krzysztof Kozak 54
James Mc. Laughlin 83
Matej Neznal 81
Per Nilsson 77
Dobromir Pressyanov 51
Wolfgang Ringer 86
Thomas Streil 22
Vladimir Udovicic 57

V  ERA Workshop: announcement

ERA2017_workshop_announcement

EPA Ireland press release

Radon gas and conveyancing 27.02.17 (2)

Further information about radon and conveyancing is on EPA website:

http://www.epa.ie/radon/homebuyersandsellers/

Details of both registration schemes:

http://www.epa.ie/pubs/advice/radiation/radonremediationcompanies.html

https://www.epa.ie/radiation/meas/radon/services/apply/

V  ERA Workshop: call for abstracts

The fifth edition of ERA radon workshop will be held in Sofia, Bulgaria on 17th May 2017. The topic this year will be radon risk communication (see TEERAS conference website (http://teeras2017.com)  for further information). The workshop will take place on  17th May commencing at 14.00 hrs  and will  be followed by the ERA General Assembly. The precise programme/schedule for the workshop  can only be made be available following the abstract deadline.  Therefore if you wish to make a presentation at the workshop we kindly ask you to now submit  an abstract for consideration by the workshop committee. The deadline for abstract submission is 7th April 2017 at 17.00 hrs. You can send your abstract to the email of ERA Secretary (secretaryATradoneurope.org).

If you are a registered participant at the TEERAS conference attendance at the ERA workshop is free of charge. If you intend only  to come  to the workshop, your fee as an ERA member is € 20  (payable on or before the 17th May).

ERA award 2017

The period to submit candidates to the ERA award 2017 is open. Therefore we encourage ERA members to present candidates based on the following conditions:

a. Deadline for nominees is 17th March 2017

b. The candidate can be any who has made an outstanding contribution to the radon issue

c. Candidates does not need to be ERA members, but they must be European citizens (not only EU citizens) or non-Europeans who work/study/live in the territory of Europe. However, the candidate must be presented by an ERA member

d. The candidate will be presented together with the reasons supporting the bid

f. The name of the winner will be announced during the ERA workshop that will take place in Sofia, Bulgaria, 17th May 2017

g. Candidacies should be sent to ERA secretary (secretary@radoneurope.org)

h. Amount of the award: 500 €

Elections of the Executive Committee of the European Radon Association (ERA)

The process for submitting candidate names to become member of the ERA Executive Committee is open. Please check out the procedures and rules in the section http://radoneurope.org/index.php/about-era-2/executive-committee/

European Radon Day 7th November 2016

Last year the first European Radon Day, an initiative led by ERA occurred on 7th November 2015. This event was a big success and satellite events took place in several European countries. You can find a summary of what happened at the ERA website.
The Executive Committee of ERA agreed on its last meeting to keep 7th November as the annual date for European Radon Day. The reason for choosing that day is that it is the birthday of Marie Sklodowska-Curie. Therefore, we encourage you to carry out activities such as public awareness actions, press communications, campaigns, training, publicity, etc… on that day and share with us through the website. So send us any material you wish to appear on the website and we will inform ERA members.

V  ERA Workshop and V ERA General Assembly

The fifth edition of ERA radon workshop will be held in Sofia, Bulgaria on 17th May 2017. The topic this year will be radon risk communication. Also, the V ERA General Assembly will be take place at the same location as the workshop. Both events will be part of the TEERAS conference (http://teeras2017.com) (Sofia, Bulgaria).

Co-option ERA Executive Committee

Dobromir Pressnayov was co-opted for the EC. This co-option must be confirmed during the next ERA General Assembly in May 2017.

Period for co-opting onto ERA Executive committee is open:

In case you wish to put your name forward, please send an e-mail to the ERA Secretary by 1st June 2016 at latest.

 

News: Basic Training Course in Radon Metrology and Control and IV ERA Radon workshop

You can download the final program of these events: Program: radon course and ERA workshop:

 

OBITUARY

Constantin Cosma, our beloved colleague and friend, passed away on Thursday 7th of April 2016 in Mexico where he was hospitalised.  The Executive Committee of ERA wishes to offer its sympathies to his family and love ones. Rest in peace

  • The second announcement for the radon basic training course and IV ERA radon workshop is ready. They are two separate events and participants can choose to register either to the radon course or ERA workshop or both. Please find the announcement here: 20160224_rs1_EraCiudadRodrigoIIA.
  • ERA has decided to establish the first award on the honour of our colleague Martin Neznal. Therefore we encourage ERA members to present candidates based on the following conditions:a. Deadline for nominees is 5th January 2016b. The candidate can be any young person (30 years old or younger) who has made an outstanding contribution to the radon issue (for instance: student/school type radon project)

    c. Candidates does not need to be ERA members, but they must be European citizens (not only EU citizens) or non-Europeans who work/study/live in the territory of Europe. However, the candidate must be presented by an ERA member

    d. The candidate will be presented together with the reasons supporting the bid

    e. The list of nominees will be available in the ERA website

    f. The name of the winner will be announced during the ERA workshop that will take place in the town of Ciudad Rodrigo, Spain 28-29 April 2016

    g. Candidacies should be sent to ERA secretary (secretary@radoneurope.org)

    h. Amount of the award: 500 €

  • News from the ICRP Commission meeting held in Sydney, Australia (April 13-17, 2015): click to download document
  • A new “top level” inter-comparison for Rn222 is on going and being supervised by BIPM-CCRI. Radon samples of unknown activity, sealed in metallic vessel, were dispatched to the participants last June. We expect to share with you more information about the results in the coming months.
  • IV ERA Radon workshop and General Assembly will be held in Ciudad Rodrigo, Spain (28th – 29th April 2016) . The event will take place together with a 3-day radon course organized by LaRUC (University of Cantabria, Spain) to cover basic aspects of the radon issue.
  • III ERA Radon workshop and General Assembly

The workshop and general assembly were held in the city of Krakow, Poland, at hotel Galaxy during the 2nd International Conference “Radon in the Enviroment 2015”.

The workshop topic was “Designing National Radon Action Plans”. The schedule of the workshop is described below.

08:30 – 08:35 Welcome (James McLaughlin, ERA President)

08:35 – 09:10 ERA Lecture: EU- BSS and summary of the Paris HERCA-ASN-NRPA radon workshop (J. McLaughlin, JL. Gutierrez-Villanueva, B. Dehandschutter and W. Ringer)

09: 10 – 10:10 Session 1: “Questions regarding the implementation of the radon requirements of the EU BSS”

– Harmonization project to apply the new EU-BSS (C. Sainz Fernandez et al.)
– Radon Action Plan Mitigation Guidance – Diagnostic Profiling of Radon Mitigation Systems (R. Coates and M. Freeman)

10:10 – 10:25 Coffee break

10:25 – 11:00 Invited presentation: IAEA Action Plan Flow Chart (Katerina Rovenska)

11:00 – 12:00 Session 2: “Implementation of Action Plans”

– Current state of preparation for a national Radon regulation in Saxony, Germany (S. Hurst)
– Milestones in the preparation of a national radon action plan in Poland (K. Kozak and J. Mazur)
– First steps towards a national radon action plan in Serbia (V. Udovičić et al.)

12:00 – 12:30 Discussion and announcements

12:30 – 13:00 Martin Neznal Memorial Lecture (B. Dehandschutter)

13:00 Closure

Soon, presentations will be available on this website only to ERA members

 

            • ERA Member Crowned “Britain’s Best Small Business of 2014”

The European Radon Association is delighted that one of its founder members, propertECO have won a national award recognising their business success and contribution to reducing exposure to cancer-causing radon.

propertECO, which is run by ERA Executive Committee member Martin Freeman and his business partner Rebecca Coates supplies radon test kits and installs mitigation systems for clients across the UK. The company entered The Pitch, the UK’s longest running small business competition as they saw an opportunity to raise the profile of radon particularly amongst other business owners. Having fought off competition from over 1000 other entrants, Rebecca impressed the panel of judges at a live event held in Bristol with a three-minute pitch about the business, followed later by another three-minute pitch about why the company should win. In this, Rebecca focused on the need to create radon awareness in the UK, where over 2000 people die from radon-induced lung cancer every year.

The company has received a significant amount of press, with the media branding propertECO as a “cancer-beating company”; something which will be hugely valuable in conveying the message that radon is a health risk. You can read more about propertECO’s success in The Pitch by following this link – http://www.thepitchuk.com/news/cancer-beating-company-named-britains-best-small-business-2014

      • The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), the specialized cancer agency of the World Health Organization (WHO), launched the 4th edition of the European Code Against Cancer with the participation of the European Commission. Based on the best available scientific evidence, the new Code provides 12 ways to adopt healthier lifestyles and boost cancer prevention across Europe. Radon prevention is highlighted as one of the ways to reduce cancer risk (http://cancer-code-europe.iarc.fr/index.php/en/ecac-12-ways/radiation-recommandation)
      • The Third ERA Radon Workshop and General Assembly will be both held in Krakow on 29th May 2015.